Deputy Chief Jamie Ayotte has banned Santa Claus and Mrs. Claus from riding in the annual Hampton Christmas Parade. The Chief sites the National Fire Protection Agency’s Guideline 1500. This is absurd. First, I have to point out that NFPA 1500 is a guideline. Secondly, does the department follow all of NFPA’s guidelines as policies? This is such a simple thing to do that is great for public relations. Unfortunately, they have turned this into a media nightmare locally. I think this is a perfect case of overthinking safety. Put a ladder belt on them, strap them in and let the kids enjoy seeing Santa!
After what Deputy Fire Chief Jamie Ayotte said were days of discussion about the issue, it was decided it was too dangerous to continue having Santa and Mrs. Clause atop the truck.
Santa’s traditional ride through town violated National Fire Protection Agency Guideline 1500, and therefore the department’s safety and liability regulations.
What do you think?