From Eyewitness News:
When Ringling Brothers, Barnum and Bailey Circus came to Coney Island, they enlisted the help of firefighters from Engine Company 245.
It was a playful photo-op with a firefighter washing down an elephant.
But it bothered the Uniformed Firefighters Association's leadership.
They say it compromised safety. They claim the firehouse shut down for 30 minutes on Wednesday while four firefighters and an officer went to scrub Suzie at the press event.
UFA President Steve Cassidy, says someone at City hall made the decision.
"It's clear a mistake was made initially. Initially, the local company was asked to participate. It went right up the chain of command. He was overruled by someone at city hall," Cassidy said.
When we asked the Mayor's office about the UFA's allegations, they referred us to the FDNY.
A spokesman there dismissed the UFA's claims, saying City Hall had nothing to do with the situation.
While at the same time, the spokesman acknowledged the mistake, saying "They should have stayed in service & it was not a malicious thing."
The UFA isn't backing down.
"It compromised public safety and firefighter's safety for public relations," Cassidy said.
The Fire Department says firefighters were only supposed to spray the animal when it walked by the firehouse, and were not ordered to close down. The department says closing the firehouse was a mistake.