Seattle 13-yr-old watches father die as police funding cuts delay emergency response

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Staffing shortages in Seattle, due in part to the city’s vaccine mandate for emergency workers, resulted in a 13-year-old boy watching his father die after he suffered a medical emergency.

Last week, the 13-year-old called 911 to report that his father was having a medical emergency but when Seattle Fire arrived they were told to wait for police before entering and Seattle police took 15 minutes to arrive which delayed the medics who were unable to save the father, according to

Seattle, Washington (iStock)

The police precinct was reportedly down to two officers and was leaning on non-patrol volunteers to meet minimum staffing levels.

Two veteran medics told radio host Jason Rantz that the death was likely avoidable if emergency crews had gotten to the scene faster and one medic said, “Had it been addressed early, his chance of survival would have been 60%.”

Additionally, the cautionary note that told first responders to wait for police because the location presented a danger to them was an outdated note and was assigned to a previous tenant.

Lurie Children’s hospital registered nurse Carolyn Ruyle prepares a dose of a Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine at Lurie Children’s hospital Friday, Nov. 5, 2021, in Chicago. Health officials hailed shots for kids ages 5 to 11 as a major breakthrough after more than 18 months of illness, hospitalizations, deaths and disrupted education. (AP Photo/Nam Y. Huh) 

“Unfortunately, we learned during the most recent emergency response that the cautionary note was for a previous tenant,” a spokesperson for Seattle Fire emailed the Jason Rantz Show on KTTH. “We are carefully reviewing this incident from many angles in our department (operations, dispatch, etc.) and our Premise Notes Policy.”

Seattle has experienced a severe police staffing shortage since the George Floyd riots in 2020 and the North Precinct, where the teen lived, is the slowest precinct to respond to 911 calls. An August 2021 report shows the average response time for emergencies in progress was nearly 13 minutes in Q2 of this year and the average response time for “priority 2” calls was 61 minutes.

SEATTLE, WA – JANUARY 22: Police look over the scene of a shooting at 3rd Avenue and Pine Streeton January 22, 2020 in the central business district of Seattle, Washington. Police say a woman was killed and seven people hurt, including a 9-year-old boy, by "multiple" shooters, but wouldn’t elaborate. (Photo by Karen Ducey/Getty Imag
(Photo by Karen Ducey/Getty Images)

Seattle’s vaccine mandate for first responders has exacerbated the staffing issues taking 100 officers off the streets in October and leaving the police department with under 1,000 deployable officers.

“One call could take out an entire precinct, wiping us out completely,” one officer told the Jason Rantz Show on KTTH.

In the 2022 budget, the Seattle City Council has proposed slashing the police budget by $11 million which includes cutting hiring incentives.

The Seattle Police Department did not immediately respond to a request for comment from Fox News.

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