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Trucks Block Jane Lew Fire Department

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Firefighters at the Jane Lew Fire Department said trucks passing by on Hackers Creek Road are parking in front of the department, something that's both dangerous and illegal. But all of the warnings on the street and hanging on the building aren't enough for some drivers.

"We've had several issues where the sirens would blow, and the trucks would still sit there, with the drivers in it, or if we're ready to respond to a call we have to wait and blow air horns and sirens to get those trucks to move," said JLFD Chief Eddie Taylor.

While some local departments get few calls, that's not the case in Jane Lew. The department has six bays to house its vehicles, and many of them are called out on a regular basis, since the department reaches far beyond the borders of the town.

"Jane Lew mutual aids a third of the county, over a third of this county, its quite a portion of Lewis and part of Upshur also, and it's quite a large department," said Bill Rowan, director of the county office of emergency management.

Taylor said it's not a problem all day long; most of the trucks stop only on their way to and from a job site. The drivers may not stay long, but that's the kind of delay Taylor said causes more trouble than the convenience is worth.

"It's just, to me, it's not worth a fleet of trucks blocking your fire department. It's too important of an agency for it to be a parking lot at the same time," Taylor said.

It's also hard for the firefighters to make a dent in the problem. Jane Lew doesn't have a police force, so it relies on the state police and the sheriff's department. However, neither group can devote the resources necessary to patrol the area for an extended time.