SPOKANE, Wash. – Greater Spokane Meals on Wheels said the fuel line on their vans have been cut seven times in the past six months, with the most recent incident happening Monday night.
The vans are parked inside a fence overnight, but it appears like a hole was cut in the fence to gain access to the vans.
"We're fortunate this time it was only one van. They've done it to multiple vans before and it's very very expensive and that's the last place we want to be putting our dollars," said Assistant Director Mark Laskowski.
The vans are parked overnight inside a fence, but it looks like someone cut a hole in it to get to them. pic.twitter.com/oXPB3jd8ll— Lindsay Nadrich (@KREMLindsay) May 9, 2017
Employees said the vans costs anywhere between $500 and $1,000 to repair every time the lines are cut. That is money they would rather spend on meals.
"Several hundred dollars to repair a van, we can feed a senior for a month for $100, so it just breaks our heart that we have to direct our funds to that needless type of destruction," Laskowski said.
Meals on Wheels provides home delivered meals to homebound elders and persons with disabilities. They deliver about 1,000 meals in Spokane every day. The organization said they can provide a month worth of meals to a senior for $100, so the repair costs are limiting the number of people they can serve. With only one van instead of two it takes longer to deliver all the meals to the people who need them.
The nonprofit said they cannot afford security cameras but if it keeps happening that's an expense they may have to budget for. They also said other businesses in the area have also had recent problems with vandalism and theft.
Each time it happens, they call police but at this point no one has been arrested. They hope someone will see this and realize the impact the vandalism is having on their ability to serve our community.