Three fire engines rescue wet squirrel
Fire chiefs have been slammed after sending three engines to rescue a squirrel that became trapped on an island in a pond.
At least seven firefighters with two ladders helped to rescue the squirrel, in Watford town centre, after a resident called to say it had fallen in.
The fire crews laid a ladder between the pavement and the island in an attempt to persuade the squirrel to crawl its way back to safety.
The rodent ended up in the water again, but it managed to swim to the ladder and climb up the rungs to reach dry land, bedraggled but apparently none the worse for its ordeal.
Steven Giles-Medhurst, a local Lib-Dem county councillor, questioned why it was necessary to send such a large response to rescue a wild animal.
"On the face of it three fire engines for a squirrel sounds excessive, and maybe questions should be asked as to why there were so many," he said.
Shopper Emily Sharman, 39, from Watford, added: "I saw the fire engines arrive and thought there must be a big fire somewhere.
"I couldn't believe it when I heard they were going to rescue a squirrel. I was surprised they sent so many firemen for a squirrel."
A spokesman for Hertfordshire Fire and Rescue said: "The first call we received about this indicated that people were in the water.
"Had it been made clear to us during the first 999 call that no one was in the water, we would have left the squirrel to the RSPCA."