Communications & Dispatch

STRATFORD, Conn. The town is considering a $2 million project to renovate and transform the old firehouse on Main Street into a new Emergency Medical Services center for its 120-member corps.The local EMS, made up almost entirely of volunteers and marking its 50th anniversary this year, has been housed in the basement of Police Department headquarters for decades.
Communications & Dispatch

SALT LAKE, Utah Christmas Eve 2006 is a day Joseph Treadwell finds difficult to talk about.It was on that day nearly six months ago - in the early morning hours when children in homes across the country were anticipating the arrival of Santa Claus - that the Murray City Fire Department captain and emergency medical technician was rushing to the scene of a two-car crash. He knew by the tone of the dispatcher's voice that the accident was critical.
Airway & Respiratory

Limbs cut above ankles at Kentucky Six Flags amusement park, officials say LOUISVILLE, Ky. Six Flags has shut down four thrill rides at parks around the country after a gruesome accident at an amusement park in Louisville.A 13-year-old girl's feet were severed just above the ankles Thursday as she rode the Superman Tower of Power ride, park officials said. The ride lifts passengers 177 feet straight up, then drops 154 feet, reaching a speed of 54 mph, according to the park's Web site.
Ambulances & Vehicle Ops

PORTLAND, Ore. Unionized workers for the Portland area's largest ambulance service rejected a contract offer and authorized a strike, union leaders said Wednesday.But the union set no strike date, and the workers employer agreed to extend their contract 15 days to provide more time to bargain. With the contract extension, the earliest a strike could occur is July 16. "We're hopeful that the sides will continue to negotiate and come to an agreement," said Dr. Gary Oxman, Multnomah County health officer.
Industry News

MEMPHIS, Tenn. Now that Shelby County has secured more ambulances, it faces another problem - ambulance service provider Rural/Metro can't find the paramedics to staff them.A shortage of paramedics in Shelby County and around the Mid-South has made it difficult to hire the 22 additional paramedics and 22 EMTs needed to staff the contract's six additional ambulances, said Glenn Miller, the division general manager for Rural/Metro. The company employs about 30 paramedics to fulfill the current contract with six ambulances and three in reserves.
Airway & Respiratory

REDWOOD CITY, Calif. Stroke victims calling 9-1-1 in San Mateo County will more quickly get to the local hospital best equipped to help them, saving precious hours or minutes in getting to the treatment that can prevent permanent damage or death.The stroke-care system, approved Tuesday by the San Mateo County Board of Supervisors, will direct the county's Emergency Medical Services to take stroke victims to one of four designated hospitals with certified stroke centers.
Cardiac & Resuscitation

BOCA RATON, Fla. Firefighter and paramedic Shaun Fix said it takes a "bizarre mentality" to want stay in his field."While everyone else is walking away going, 'ew,' we're walking right into it," he said.The 44-year-old Emergency Medical Services Captain at Boca Raton Fire-Rescue was recently nominated for an All-Star Award by the television show America's Most Wanted. The award is for a first responder who goes above and beyond to keep his or her community safe. Fix remembers getting the phone call from someone with the TV show.
Cardiac & Resuscitation

PECOS, N.M. Pecos mother Joellen Chavez says there are two main reasons why her son Isaiah, 2, is still alive today. One reason, she said, is "the man upstairs."The other is a cardiopulmonary resuscitation course she took 11 years ago.Chavez said both helped Isaiah survive an accident May 22 at her parents' house in Pecos. On that day, Chavez, 31, briefly lost track of Isaiah when she went to answer the front door. The toddler, who is the youngest of Chavez's five children, wandered into the backyard.