Man to pay for Everglades fire

And you thought you were having a bad day? The cost of fighting the fire in the Everglades–a fire which has been burning six days, since the April 15th–will be billed to the person who accidentally started it.

The man’s name has not been released, but he has been identified as a buggy driver who accidentally started the blaze when driving through the ‘glades. Was it a spark from his buggy? A smoldering cigarette butt? No word how it began. But somehow, state officials know they have their man. And he’s going to be saddled with a bill well into the hundreds of thousands of dollars. Personally, I’d like him to also pay me for getting me stuck on the highway, when Alligator Alley was closed due to smoke. My time is worth a lot, thanks.

So if the government can bill you for causing a fire, what about the other errors of human stupidity? For instance, people who decide to go mountain climbing in the middle of winter, and get stuck on an icy cliff 8,000 feet in the air, and need to be airlifted to safety–who pays for their rescue? Logic would lead one to believe they should pay. It might also (a) inspire them to try a little harder to get back down on their own, or (b) not be stupid enough to go mountain climing in the winter in the first place. This may not be an issue in Florida, but we have our own environmental obstacles and the principle is the same. As Edina Monsoon said in Absolutely Fabulous: “Just tax the stupid people!”

It’s just a thought.

Buggy ride backfire: a hefty bill [Miami Herald]

1 Comment so far

  1. KATHY (unregistered) on May 4th, 2007 @ 8:59 am

    HOW ABOUT A GOVERNMENT AGENCY WITH A POLITICAL AGENDA SENDING YOU A BILL FOR $44,000 AND NOTHING YOU CAN DO ABOUT IT. THIS INDIVIDUAL WAS OPERATING THE BUGGIE IN A LEGAL AREA, WITH DO CARE FOR THE ENVIRONMENT. THE BUGGIE HAD AN ELECTRICAL PROBLEM NEAR THE STARTER WHICH MAY OR MAY NOT HAVE CAUSED THE FIRE IN THE GRASS. THERE WAS NO NEGLIGENSE ON HIS PART. IF YOU WANT SOMEONE TO PAY YOU FOR YOUR TIME YOU SHOULD LOOK TO WATER MGT. DISTRICT FOR DUMPING ALL THE WATER OUT OF LAKE O LAST FALL. THIS AREA WOULD HAVE BURNT ONE WAY OR THE OTHER BEFORE THE WATER COMES BACK UP ANYWAY. THE STATE IS JUST TRYING TO DEVERT BLAME AND MAKE A HARD WORKING GUY PAY FOR THERE SCREW UPS.



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