Beaumont Fire Rescue Captain Jimmy Blanchard carries a gun everyday on the job. He’s one of the four fire marshals who does and luckily, he’s never had to discharge it.
“Fire Marshal’s Office, we are investigators. We have gone to the police academy and we handle some law enforcement aspects of our job.” Blanchard said.
On Monday, police say a Dallas Firefighter-Paramedic was responding to a person with a gunshot wound when he was shot by gunman, Derek Brown.
Investigators say Brown was later found dead from a self-inflicted gunshot wound.
And with a bill passed by the Texas Senate to allow firefighters and EMS to carry handguns on duty, will it make a difference when it comes to safety?
“At the same time, are you going to introduce a gun to another who may not have a gun to begin with… in a violent situation? Do you want to bring a problem to an already problem to escalate something to that level?” said Blanchard.
As of right now, Beaumont Fire Rescue does not have a real opinion about the bill. However, Blanchard says their job is a dangerous one and firefighters take extra precautions when responding to a 911 call.
“If they feel like their life is endangered or if a third party is endangered or if they are going to have some physical harm, they can implement those steps and help comes automatically.”
Firefighters can give a code to dispatch which can notify police right away during a dangerous situation.
Senate Bill 1408 is currently being considered by the Texas House of Representatives.