D.C. Mayor Vincent Gray backs fire chief Kenneth Ellerbe ahead of probe's findings

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Local,DC,Alan Blinder,D.C. Council,Vincent Gray

With the District slated to release its report on shortcomings in the D.C. Fire and Emergency Medical Services Department this week, D.C. Mayor Vincent Gray said Wednesday that Chief Kenneth Ellerbe has his support.

"He's been a firefighter for 30 years, and he's a respected professional in the field," Gray told reporters. "I'm delighted to be working with him."

Deputy Mayor Paul Quander has been conducting a review of the fire department since March 5, when an ambulance from Prince George's County had to transport an injured D.C. police officer to the hospital because the city did not have one available.

Gray said he had not reviewed the results of the probe, which administration officials say will show that several ambulances went offline improperly.

Although Gray is standing behind Ellerbe, the chief is facing a "no confidence" vote by the union that represents firefighters next week.

ablinder@washingtonexaminer.com

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