No moss grows on EMS - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

No moss grows on EMS

June 30, 2006

Albany --  Ambulance traffic in Albany is rising for the 21st year in a row.  

A week ago, Dougherty County E.M.S. answered the most calls in their history. Last Friday, paramedics answered 80 calls, the most since their department was started in 1972.

Patients suffering from stroke, broken bones, car crashes, even a suicide attempt. Eight ambulances, 16 paramedics, transported 61 patients to hospitals, three of them out of town.  

E.M.S. Director Bobby Tripp said "The population figures don't say that Albany is growing, but for some reason we are making a lot more calls."

In 1985, Dougherty County E.M.S. answered 9,177 calls. In 2005, they answered almost double that amount, more than 18,000, and it looks like 2006 will be even larger.

 For the paramedics, the 24 hour days stay busy.  "Oh yea, You get tired, you get worn out. But the job is demanding," EMT Leon Rolle said.

Hayward Allen has been a paramedic for ten years. Allen says new technology like these power assisted stretchers help while making multiple calls."If you hurt yourself, hurt your back, you will be out of your job. With the call volume increased as much as it has the last few years, anything we can do to just us some relief we need all we can do."

A busy Friday, 80 calls, the most ever, but the paramedics say they make sure they give their best treatment to each patient. Allen said "We are as well at two in the morning as we are at two in the afternoon."  

"The job is very gratifying because you are saving somebody's life. You are helping people," Rolle said.

Dougherty County E.M.S. workers say everyday could be a new record setter, as an average day at Dougherty County E.M.S. now has them answering 50 calls.

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