Dec 10, 2012
The Los Angeles Fire Department rescuers were accused of failing to respond to medical emergencies within six minutes, which is the department’s standard.
In fact, even six minutes is too long. In cases of heart attack, for example, brain damage can begin four minutes after the heart stops beating.
The fire chief defended himself to the LA City Council, pointing at the budget cuts. In 2008, the LAFD got 561 million dollars; by 2011, their budget was cut to 473 million. After the cuts, more than 20 fire houses of the city’s 106 had engines shut down.
But don’t expect City Council members or the mayor to worry over avoidable deaths. They are too busy handing out tax breaks to local businesses: the latest one gives 50 million dollars in business tax breaks over the next three years!