BLUFFTON, S.C. (WTOC) - The Bluffton Fire Department has a problem with how many calls they’re getting. But it’s not because they’re getting too many, it’s because they aren’t getting enough.
“Being unprepared. I wouldn't say scary, it's uncomfortable,” firefighter Sean Hyde said.
The Bluffton Fire Department wants you to call them in an emergency.
“Unfortunately, recently in the past few weeks we've have some pretty important calls, emergencies if you will, where folks who live in gated neighborhoods with their own security forces call security before they call 911,” Bluffton Fire Capt. Lee Levesque said.
They say calling security instead of 911 means first responders don't have the information they need.
"Further information, patient age, size, whether there's people trapped inside. They don’t have the answers to those questions,” Levesque said.
"That puts us behind because we want to know what we need on the scene rather than guess,” Hyde said.
It's all about preparation.
"It's basically a big toolbox, so what tools are we going to need for the call?"
Firefighters say they just want to help and calling 911 directly is the best way to make sure callers get it.
"We want to make sure we are there as soon as possible rather than a secondhand call, like getting security when security is going to call us anyway so calling us is probably the best."
They want to remind people there is no penalty for calling and canceling when you think you might need help; they’d rather you be safe than sorry.