Workers tasked with cleaning the ruins left behind by the Camp Fire have now been relieved of their duties. The wildfire was the deadliest and most destructive in California history, killing nearly 100 people.
The workers’ termination came after a massive outcry after social media posts showed them posing with various items destroyed by the fire, including one of the thousands of obliterated homes and even a deceased cat, whose body the workers posed with a beer bottle.
The captions were as insensitive as the pictures themselves, with the one accompanying the dead cat reading:
“Dude…I was just chilling with my homies, having a couple of cold ones, and BAM…damn fire breaks out.”
The images below may be disturbing to some readers.
The Town of Paradise’s Facebook page announced that authorities had been contacted regarding at least one of the workers and that they were looking into the possibility of legal ramifications.
The post read, in part:
“Town leadership has contacted this subject’s employer and he will no longer be working in our Town. The Paradise Police Department is looking into criminal charges.”
The workers were employees of Bigge Crane and Rigging, who released a statement after the workers were fired.
People praised the company for its swift and forceful actions to correct the situation.
While Bigge Crane and Rigging’s actions were appreciated, the internet was horrified by the workers’ irreverence.
The scariest thing about this is that I'll bet they didn't even realize they were doing anything wrong until they were called on it. This is just instinctive behavior for too many American adults today.
— We Gonna Be Alright (@RobFromSac) December 16, 2018
— Berto (@BeastinSince86) December 16, 2018
Example #25,014 of the bizarre, modern day phenomenon of the desire for Facebook likes transcending common sense, dignity, and the need for a paycheck. ????
— EastCoastMTBer ???? (@EastCoastMTBer) December 17, 2018
???? Disgusting those ashes are some corpses SMH
— dazzyg15 (@dboy3210) December 17, 2018
What kind of person works in an environment like this with such significant loss and not only makes a 'joke' by staging the photo, but then is stupid enough to post it.
It's beyond being dumb and insensitive – they have serious issues.
— Katherine (@ItZmeKatherine) December 17, 2018
These workers may have thought they were just performing a job, but we hope this backlash has shown them how to conduct themselves when cleaning up scenes of immense tragedy and loss.