The Star, Shelby, N.C.
Cleveland County is investing $125,000 in a new EMS base in the Casar area.
The base, which will be located at the intersection of N.C. 10 and School House Road near Casar Elementary School, will serve residents in the Casar, Delight and Toluca areas. Those areas were previously served by first responders from Polkville or Belwood EMS bases depending on exact location help was needed.
Commissioner Kevin Gordon said the new base will help reduce EMS response times in those areas. The national standard for paramedics to arrive at a call for help is around eight minutes. That mark can be hard to reach in certain areas if help is coming from outside of the immediate area.
“Casar is still an outlying area, even though it is rural its citizens pay taxes, and they deserve the same level of service as anywhere else in the county,” said Gordon. “Kudos to Tommy (McNeilly, EMS director) and county EMS for finding a solution within the county budget already, and we are very ecstatic they were able to do that and we appreciate all the work EMS provide all across the county.”
McNeilly said the new base makes the most sense when trying to address response times in those areas.
“It’s simple math,” McNeilly said in a release. “The more bases you have, the less distance an ambulance has to travel to a call. The less distance the ambulance has to travel, the less time there is between a person dialing 911 and having a paramedic or EMT at their side. And the sooner the EMS personnel can be with the patient, the better the chances are of a positive outcome in what are often life-threatening situation.”
The new base will be a new structure nearly identical to one that was placed in Polkville in 2018. It will be staffed with a county paramedic and a quick response vehicle.
The new base is expected to be open and begin operation on Tuesday, June 1.
Dustin George can be reached at 704-669-3337 or Dustin.George@ShelbyStar.com. Find him on Twitter @DustinLGeorge.
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