Safety is a collaborative effort in District 3, as a recent incident clearly shows. It involved staff from engineering, design, traffic, maintenance, incident response and even information technology. Althea Fackrell provides details:
Wednesday, July 11, 2007 started as a quiet day at District 3. That was before an unusual visitor showed up at the door.
As everyone was engage in daily activities, we noticed a furry creature on the sidewalk at the rear office entrance of the assistant district of engineer of operations.
Michael Garz, our program management engineer, announced that he was looking at a badger on the sidewalk. I went to investigate, and sure enough, there strolled the little creature. He disappeared around the corner by the entrance to materials so I went to the door there and caught a glimpse of him entering the courtyard. I then went to the main entrance to see if I was really seeing a badger in the city.
Sure enough, I was.
By that time, others had spotted him and were following behind outside to get a closer glimpse. That fellow had a parade of D-3 personnel following him through the parking lot and over to the buildings by the strip mall. We watched as he proceeded north toward State Street and possibly to the river. We briefly discussed his welfare and went back to work.
Later in the afternoon, I received a page telling me that our badger had returned.
Lo and behold, to my unbelieving eyes, the little guy was sunning himself in our courtyard. At that point, our management assistant, Joy Finley, made a call to AIDA, a small animal rescue agency. We were asked to keep our unusual visitor busy in the courtyard while help arrived.
Keeping the badger occupied was the easy part. Soon word had spread that our visitor had returned and a rescue was in the works. In true form, Incident Response showed up with a trash can ready to capture the animal.
Our design section, under the leadership of Monica Crider, began devising ways to keep the young one hydrated and set out containers of water. He actually took drinks.
Our traffic section made sure that the fellow stayed safe by keeping it traveling in one direction. Kenny O'Neil, one of the IT personnel, showed up with noisemakers that would keep the animal confined in the courtyard.
Six of us stood sentinel at the edge of the courtyard. Dan Bryant, our district maintenance manager, who is meticulous about documenting incidents with pictures, braved the wild and went in to capture photos for reference if needed.
the meantime, our guest, who was named Kenny-G (aka Seabiscuit), decided
to stay. He began digging a lair that reached about a foot deep. Then
he went to shade in the bushes.
Within five minutes, Kenny-G aka Seabiscuit was headed to his temporary residence, riding first class in a large air conditioned kennel.
Rescuers planned to observe him for a few days and then release him in a more suitable environment.
But in the meantime we are keeping the lair intact just in case he returns. Bridge and Building may need to add a deck adjoining K-G's lair to give him easy access to the courtyard door window where he can observe D3 personnel observing him in the courtyard.