Salt Lake City Fire says firetruck with Trump flags is not theirs

Oct 8, 2020, 5:43 PM | Updated: 6:07 pm
Trump flags firetruck...
Several people called The Salt Lake City Fire Department after seeing a fire truck with Trump flags ahead of Wednesday night's vice presidential debate. But the fire department says the truck does not belong to them. (Photo: Lindsay Aerts)
(Photo: Lindsay Aerts)

SALT LAKE CITY – The Salt Lake City Fire Department and Mayor Erin Mendenhall’s office were flooded with calls Thursday after a firetruck with several Trump flags on it was seen driving around ahead of the vice presidential debate. The fire department, however, said it does not belong to them. 

Salt Lake City Fire Battalion Chief Ryan Mellor said it was a decommissioned, privately-owned firetruck — making it legal.

“It’s not illegal [for the owners] to put campaign material on it,” Mellor said. “That’s quite common, as a matter of fact, for people to do that. But we would never have our rigs or our personnel involved in that on duty and on city property.”

Firefighters are not allowed to do that, according to Mellor. 

“We have a city policy that says that none of our people are allowed to do anything like that with city equipment and campaign for a person,” Mellor said.    

Plus, he said firefighters already had their hands full Wednesday night. 

“Our crews were all working,” Mellor said. 

Although he did not mind the calls, Mellor said he encourages the public to check and see if a fire truck has an official seal on it before picking up the phone to complain. 

“I’m glad people care enough to let us know, but we definitely don’t want anybody thinking our employees would do anything like that on duty,” Mellor said. 

Photos and videos of the firetruck decked with Trump flags received so much attention online, the mayor’s office and the SLCFD responded to questions about it the next day.

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Salt Lake City Fire says firetruck with Trump flags is not theirs