There's a lifeguard shortage in University City after ten of them were fired for underage drinking at the pool where they worked. It stemmed from a Fourth of July party. The Parks Department calls the incident a breach of trust, an issue of safety and a criminal act.
The morning after Independence Day, the normally pristine Herman Park Pool was littered with beer bottles and cans. Someone had broken in for a late night July 4th party; the Parks Director says she was determined to find out whom.
There were pictures on the internet. As it turns out, the partiers had posted them on the Facebook website. Eventually, ten lifeguards owned up to breaking and entering and to underage drinking. They were promptly terminated.
The Parks, Rec and Forestry Department do not want the former lifeguards to face charges. Officials want to let the lifeguards' families decide their punishment.
The incident has left the department light on lifeguards. They started out with a staff of 29, and now they're short ten people.
To compensate, University City plans to modify the pool schedule, adjust day camp programs and even ask neighboring towns to lend them some lifeguards.