OAK RIDGE (WATE) - Not only can the police give you a citation in Oak Ridge, but now certain fire officials have the authority.
The Oak Ridge City Council voted Monday to allow high ranking fire officials to give various citations.
The move is part of the "Not in Our City" plan to make Oak Ridge a better place to live.
"Parking in fire lanes is the biggest violation," explained Oak Ridge Fire Chief Darryl Kerley. "One afternoon I spoke to a gentleman parked in a fire lane and I said, 'Sir, do you know that's a fire lane?' He said, "Well, I don't see any fire.'"
Situations like that are the reason why some fire officials are now able to give citations, especially when it prevents firefighters from doing their job.
Chief Kerley says this is a way to make the community safer.
"We're going to try to find the drivers of the vehicles and have them move. It's more important to have them move than to cite the person. Our attempt is to public awareness not just giving citations," Kerley said.
Different violations would constitute a ticket from the fire department. An example would be parking your car in front of a fire hydrant.
"Fire lane violations, fire hydrant violations, connections to the fire department sprinkler systems., handicapped parking issues and when people are blocking a scene in the way of emergency vehicles," said Kerley about other means for citations.
Oak Ridge Police Chief James Akagi says the initiative keeps more eyes on safety and raises awareness within the community, letting people know which parking situations could be potentially harmful.
"They're not aware that their vehicle being there could be a potential hazard. They are not aware that their vehicle being there could hurt someone else," Akagi said.
The police department will train the fire department.
"We'll give them training in how to write the citations and what information is important," Akagi said.
Firefighters won't be handing out tickets until the training is complete. The department can not say just yet when that training will take place.