Steve Fleming told Inside Towers that he and his crew at Technical Rescue Systems recently donated their services to rescue a cat from a LaSalle, CO water tower when all other responsible parties said “no”…or “yes” for a price.
Fleming, a 37-year veteran firefighter, a technical rescue training company owner and instructor for 30 years and a certified tower climber/training company owner for over 17 years told Inside Towers he was amazed at the media attention the operation received on November 2. The cat was “ironically,” said Steve, stuck on the water tower “cat walk” for over four days. The water tower was also in use as a cell tower for some major carriers.
The city of Lasalle, Colorado made hundreds of calls, to nearby fire departments to electrical utility services to the cellular company that has the lease for the cell antennas on the tower… all but three said “no”… Fleming told Inside Towers. Only two said they might come and look but at a price between $2,800 to $4,800. Then at 8:30 a.m. November 2, they called Fleming and his Technical Rescue Systems crew. “We said ‘sure’, we can do that and at no charge,” Fleming said.
“Within two hours we had our insurance broker send the liability forms, we gathered our climbing and rescue equipment, pet crate and our fleet of drones we use for tower and structure inspection services … got directions to Lasalle and were on our way,” he said.
The drones, Yuneec Q500 4K’s, were used to see where the cat was and where it went once a crew member got to it. “The drone footage worked great for the real time vantage point, after action review and news footage,” Fleming said.
Once the cat was rescued, Fleming called it a nice story and cited a news reporter who said it was a story with “no crime, no blood, NO POLITICS and it was a complete warm and fuzzy kitty rescue…a success…”
And to show good deeds sometimes do get rewarded, Fleming said the city of Lasalle has asked them to do a tower inspection of their other water tower in town for rust and paint coverage issues.