Hundreds of people have populated Pajarito Mesa just Southwest of Albuquerque for decades. But without addresses, fire trucks, ambulances or sheriff’s deputies have struggled to reach these residents when it matters most. Bernalillo County is offering what officials said they hope will be a good solution.
Bernalillo County Fire Chief Chris Celaya installed the first emergency number sign on a post outside of a Pajarito Mesa residence. "It’s been a long project in regards to first being able to map it out, being able to identify the structures out here," he said. "The next phase involved getting the residents to come out and voluntarily identify themselves so that we would know where to place these."
The emergency program is voluntary, and out of an estimated 229 structures, around 47 people have signed up to receive numbers so far. Mesa residents can continue to reach out to the county for a number.
But officials are sure to clarify: This is not an address. It’s a location number for emergency responders. That’s because the roads on Pajarito Mesa are not considered legal, they said, so the county can’t recognize addresses.