BCSFD Launches EMS “Fly Car” Program
Belgium Cold Springs Fire Department (BCSFD) Chief Matt Speach has announced a new service introduced at the beginning of June. The EMS Fly Car Program will enable BCSFD EMTs to respond direct to a medical scene without having to respond to the Station first.
“The program was designed in direct response to the needs of our residents.”, said Chief Speach. “Over half of our calls are EMS in nature. Our EMS program supplements an already strong EMS presence in our area. Our primary EMS partners are GBAC [Greater Baldwinsville Ambulance Corp] and NOVA [Northern Onondaga Volunteer Ambulance]. Both agencies provide outstanding service and care to our residents. Our goal is to supplement that EMS partnership and enhance that level of service and care for our residents.”
Catherine “Kit” Thompson, BCSFD Board of Fire Commissioners Chairperson, said “Chief Speach and Past Chief Kearney have put a lot of focus on building up the BCSFD EMS Program over the last 4 years. As a result, we now have 15 NYS Certified EMTs in the Department and will likely add 2-3 more before the year is complete.”
Chief Speach explains how the new program works, “Our EMTs will sign out the EMS Fly Car for a couple days or a week, whatever works for their schedule. During that time they can respond direct to any EMS calls. The EMS Fly Car is equipped with AED and all the tools and medications that EMTs would need for BLS (Basic Life Support) calls. The idea is to share the responsibility of the Fly Car between all our EMTs. This will help reduce response fatigue, reduce our response times and increase the level of service for our residents.”
The new EMS Fly Car program will also supplement BCSFD’s own Chiefs, of which 2 are NYS Certified EMTs. “The goal of our EMS program, including the addition of the new EMS Fly Car, is to get our medical staff and necessary equipment to a scene as quickly and safely as possible.”, said Chief Speach.
BCSFD is not unique with their EMS call volume. The NFPA tracks all fire calls for the US and has reported a steady increase in EMS calls since they started tracking back in 1980, see table below.
Many attribute the lower fire calls with stricter building codes (sprinkler systems, alarms systems, etc.) and enhanced fire prevention that starts in elementary schools. Locally, the Lysander Public Safety Coalition performs annual fire prevention classes for Baldwinsville Central Schools. In addition to the school fire prevention program, there are also classes and seminars held at apartment complexes and assisted living facilities throughout the year.
(Table Source: NFPA Fire Call Data).
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