Published: June 19, 2013
Challenge seems to be bureaucracy
Re: Gazette Sunday, June 16, page A22, "Opinion, The Gazette's Viewpoint:"
Like Rick Hatton, I am also a veteran of Vietnam, where I also flew F-4s. Your "The Gazette's Viewpoint" was a great advertisement for Hatton's DC-10s and should have been labeled as such. Before we spend millions of our tax dollars based on the opinion of the person who stands to make the most money, perhaps some research is in order. NASA conducted a study on Very Large Air Tankers (VLATs), and the conclusion appears to be the DC-10 is not quite as useful in Colorado terrain as the CEO of the company seems to suggest. Let's also remember we (taxpayers) already bought two air tankers, MAFFS, that sit right here in Colorado Springs. The challenge in using them more often (on alert, rapid response, etc.) to protect our communities seems to be bureaucracy. Perhaps we should get out a pen to address this rather than a purse. Throwing millions of dollars at Hatton, whose aircraft has significant limitations for Colorado, may seem like a good idea to Hatton and The Gazette, but I think we already have the solution, bought and paid for, sitting at Peterson Air Force Base.
James (Jim) Condit, Colorado Springs
They truly got it right
Three cheers for the County Disaster Assistant Center on 1675 W. Garden of the Gods Road!
I had the privilege of being a Care and Share volunteer a couple of days and was so completely amazed with the quality of the system that was used to help people with any need. Articles had been written over this last year about meetings to make things easier if disaster ever struck again. They truly got it right! It worked like a well-oiled machine. There is almost everything available that anyone can possibly need and it is done in an orderly way so people don't have to wait very long to get the information and services they need.
Care and Share was the last stop, so their food, etc. was rolled out and placed into the evacuee's car. The Black Forest evacuees arrived at our area and were absolutely amazing, as most had smiles and appreciation for the services they had just received. Their attitude was a tribute to the services provided. They weren't frustrated or upset when they reached the end of their journey. A big "thank you" to the planning and implementation of the Disaster Assistant Center! You get an "A+" in my book.
Barbara Rickett, Colorado Springs
Disability access has improved
What a difference a year makes. This year's response to the Black Forest disaster for people with disabilities seems to have gone much better. Kudos to KOAA, Fox, KKTV, and KDRO who improved their emergency communications for the Deaf and the Hard of Hearing communities. Live captioning was provided and better information on the scroll at the bottom of the TV screen made it much easier to understand what was happening. The county provided sign language interpreters during the briefings a day after the fire started and the TV stations worked to get it right on how to include the interpreter even when the camera shifted to another view. In addition, disability access did not seem to be a problem at the shelter at Palmer Ridge High School. The Red Cross volunteers we met were experienced with accessible shelter issues which helped tremendously. Also, the county sheriff offered information on how to evacuate if one could not self-evacuate through its websites and TV media; where to go was abundantly clear. These were issues brought up after the Waldo fire and I am pleased to see that accessible emergency alerts, evacuations, and shelter have greatly improved for those with disabilities.
Maybe the silver lining in the Waldo fire is that we were able to practice preparedness for this year and the future. All of us, including people with disabilities and their families must create a disaster plan for ourselves now that local governments are doing a much better job including the disability community's issues in their plan.
Patricia Yeager, The Independence Center, Colorado Springs
Boys will learn a lesson
Re: Boys held in a closet: What was he to do, let them run away? I think it's a great way to detain them while waiting on the police. By being caught, scared and hopefully held accountable these boys will learn a lesson. If they had run away they would have been emboldened. He is a hero.
Dan Farmer, Colorado Springs
Inmates running the asylum
First of all, what are kids 8 and 10 doing out away from their homes without some sort of supervision? The man who caught these kids should be given a huge hurrah for stopping the vandalism, not a lawsuit!
This is another case of the inmates (kids) running the asylum! Kids, after all, are adults under construction and if they are allowed to vandalize while young, they will end up being our criminals in a few years. Parents if you can't/won't discipline/supervise your kids, don't have them.
Alice Hawes, Fountain
Absolutely the wrong response
Jesse Daniels' handling of the situation with the juvenile vandals was entirely correct. He corralled them until the police arrived. For him to be arraigned for child endangerment was absolutely the wrong response. The law abiding citizen is in trouble and the vandals are probably not suffering the consequences of their action.
The message that sends to these kids, and their friends, will stay with them for a long time and will be detrimental to society. This is why there is so much disruption today, consequence and repercussion seem to be foreign concepts to many.
Michael S. Welsh, Colorado Springs