Stolen Signs and Subsequent Hazards to Community
Since the 1st of January 2017, approximately 70 signs have had to be replaced due to vandalism or theft. The cost to the tax payers of Camden County is several thousand dollars so far this year. Last week there was an arrest of 2 minors for possession of five signs in the Macks Creek/Climax Springs area. Over the weekend of the 4th and the 5th at least 20 signs (that we are aware of) were stolen from the Macks Creek/Climax Springs area along Bannister Hollow and Greens Ford Rd.
On the morning of 2/8/2017, Mercy Ambulance (Paramedic Debbie Mayhew and EMT Ryan Rentchler, Missouri State Highway Patrol Master Sgt. Buttram,CCSO Lt. Joe Botta, CRO Deputy Trey Scott, Southwest Fire Captain Mike Hufferd, Camden County Animal Control Officer Mike Stoufer, Camden County 911 Mapping and Addressing Mike Lloyd, and Lt. Arlyne Page (not pictured), met at the intersection of Bannister Hollow Road and Green Ford Road to discuss the rash of sign thefts in the area and the effect it would have on emergency response.
“Law Enforcement, Medical and Fire Services rely on the signage and when thieves and vandals steal and destroy the signs, it could cause the life or additional property damage because response is delayed”, Lt. Joe Botta.
MSHP Master Sergeant Buttram, “When Signs go missing, it inhibits the Patrol’s ability to assist those we have sworn to protect and serve.”
Southwest Fire Captain Mike Hufferd, “Lots of new people in the Emergency Services, who are not familiar with the area and depend on the signs to get them to the incident. Time is of importance and when you have to spend a lot of time looking for an address someone could die.”
Paramedic Dabbie Mayhew and EMT Ryan Rentchler, “CAD sometimes stops mapping in the rural areas which creates a problem. We look for the road and may accidentally travel onto a driveway when the sign is missing. It puts the patient in further peril if we can’t get there. In many situations, seconds can mean live or death for the victim.”
If anyone sees suspicious activity, please contact your local Law Enforcement Agency.