OXNARD's DIRTY LITTLE SECRETS # 05
--- OXNARD's DIRTY LITTLE SECRETS # 04
OXNARD's DIRTY LITTLE SECRETS # 03 --- OXNARD's DIRTY
LITTLE SECRETS # 02
OXNARD's DIRTY LITTLE SECRETS # 01 --- OXNARD's DIRTY
LITTLE SECRETS # 00
Stories & Opinion by Debbie Killpatrick -
Another one of Oxnard's dirty little secrets. On saturday
evening October 6, 2001, about 5:15pm I called the none emergency
phone number of the Oxnard Fire Department. There was no answer at
that number, I then called the non-emergency number of the police
department. Where I reported a chemical that smelled like petroleum
product of some kind in standing water an alley in the 400 block area
of Oxnard. I was concerned that with so many small children that
someone may get hurt. Well I was told that the Fire Department would
be there in 5 minutes. 15 minutes later I called the non-emergency
number again and reported that I had just seen a small child wall
through the water and that someone had just walked out a back door
with a lit cigarette. Well 5 more minutes passed and the Oxnard Fire
Department did arrive. Though he did not identify himself I believed
that I spoke to the most senior fireman. I showed him a puddle of
about 20 feet in length and about 3 feet in width and nearly 2 inches
in depth in the center of the alley. There was a milky white fluid in
the center and a rainbow sheen on the sides of the water. Checking
the garbage can in the alley a can of gunk-engine cleaner was found.
The fireman (senior I guess) seemed uninterested in cleaning up the
mess. I was concerned as there are so many children in the area. The
fireman told me that he would not close off the alley. I told him
that I knew someone who worked for US Fish and Wildlife Service, and
was a contaminant specialist. He then decided that he would return to
the station and get some materials to clean the chemicals. It took me
saying I knew a contaminant specialist for him to clean this mess up!
He told me that there were many worst mess in the city. My mental
question was why haven't you cleaned them up if you know of them, and
then so what here was a known danger that he could do something about.
Well when they returned they came with a bag of a sawdust product
that is treated to clean up spills of various chemicals. They put
down less than a 1/3 of the bag and gathered the floating chemicals,
but left the standing water in the center of the alley. Lucky for the
children of the neighborhood, a neighbor who spoke enough english was
around to translate into spanish how dangerous it would be for them
to walk through the water. Of course it does not stop the cats and
dogs that wander the neighborhood from drinking it and then dying.
I got to thinking later that same night. I wondered and of course
could not help compare what I saw in an Oxnard Fireman vs the New
York Firemen who lost their lives trying to save others. Perhaps I am
being unfair to the Oxnard Firemen? But what I thought as I after my
first contact with the Oxnard Fire Department, that man must of
thought that a small chemical spill was beneath him. I know it was no
burning building or a serious car accident or even something that
would garner press from the local papers yet I knew that chemicals
especial petroleum ones can and do cause breathing problems in
children and senior citizens, that cats and dogs die from poisoning
each day, and what would of happened if it had caught on fire. But
this was my first contact with the Oxnard Fire Department
I addtionally wonder, if such a mess would of been left in Ojai or
even Santa Barbara, but in a poor Mexican neighborhood in Oxnard, it
was going to be left, except that I did protest and made it known
that I knew specialist in the field.
use your BACK button to go BACK .....
THANKS FOR VISITING - HOPE YOU LIFE IS FANTASTIC TODAY ......
THE OXNARD JOURNAL EXISTS FOR WOMEN AND SOME MEN ...........