Beaumont -- EMS crews have a priority to preserve the public's health, but a parking job Thursday could have jeopardized safety.
Beaumont medics parked a city ambulance sideways and at an angle across a handicapped space, while blocking access to a second spot at the Whataburger on East Lucas.
A concerned citizen took a photo of the problematic parking, and sent it to us. According to an employee at the Whataburger where it happened, this is nothing new.
"They always park like that I mean this is not a first time thing I mean y'all just caught it, but we catch it all the time", said Ashley Richard.
We checked with city records, and there was no medical nor emergency call from the Whataburger at around noon Thursday, when the medics parked haphazardly over the handicapped space, just to go inside and pick up lunch.
Richard said she's disappointed by the medics' actions. So is Beaumont citizen Velina Johnson, who said, "I think that there's a whole lot of space over here, that they could have parked somewhere else and leave that open for the people who are truly handicapped."
We went to the Beaumont Public Health Department to get answers from Director Sherry Ulmer. The Health Department is over EMS, we showed her the photo.
Ulmer said, "They made a mistake by parking in the handicapped parking spot. But they're busy, they work 24 hour shifts and I'm sure they thought they could run in and run out without an impact to the community."
Ulmer says the medics will not lose their jobs over this, but all crews have been warned.
She said, "I've already spoken to the EMS manager to remind them just to be more careful, and just to be more mindful of what could have happened if someone needed that parking spot."
Ulmer says citizens should know that Beaumont has a good team of medics. She says the city's EMS units are some of the busiest in Texas.