For the last several months, the City’s Public Safety department and City lawyers have been asking the manufacturer of some equipment sold to the Fire Department to refund the cost of the equipment — so that the Department can replace it. Yesterday’s decision by a City jury to award $12 million to the family of a firefighter who died wearing the same equipment should attract the company’s attention.
The company blamed the Fire Department and the firefighter. The jury, however, blamed the company’s equipment.
In February, City voters will be asked to approve a public safety bond issue that will include the money for new equipment. And City lawyers will continue to demand a refund, though that process could take months or years if it gets to court.
In the meantime, though, the company’s bosses should certainly consider what a jury just told them.