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Springfield fire chief arrested on DUI charge
zittrouer travis
Travis Zittrouer

The Springfield fire chief, hailed last week for his efforts in a tanker truck-pickup crash and explosion that claimed three lives, is on suspension following his arrest Saturday morning.

Travis Zittrouer was booked into Chatham County Jail at 2:27 a.m. by the Georgia State Patrol after being arrested for driving under the influence and speeding.

Zittrouer’s bond was set at $4,600. He has been the city’s full-time fire chief for more than two years.

He has been placed on administrative leave until city officials can review the details surrounding the incident, City Manager Brett Bennett said.

Mayor Barton Alderman said he and Bennett met Sunday to discuss the situation, and Bennett’s research into terminations for employees charged with DUI usually stems from those workers being pulled over while in city-owned vehicles. Zittrouer was driving his own vehicle at the time of his arrest, according to Alderman.

“We’re going to do what’s best for Springfield,” Alderman said.

Both Bennett and Alderman extolled Zittrouer’s training and expertise after he was commended by the Effingham Emergency Management Agency for his work as the incident commander supervising the Nov. 21, 2013, tanker truck-pickup crash and explosion.

“He was the most qualified person, and I think everyone agreed on that,” Alderman said.