Lee Co. continues to blend Fire/EMS - WALB.com, South Georgia News, Weather, Sports

Lee Co. continues to blend Fire/EMS

Lee County Manager Ron Rabun Lee County Manager Ron Rabun
LEESBURG, GA (WALB) -

The merger of Lee County EMS and fire departments is moving along as planned. The county has named a new interim public safety director to oversee the transition. It could ultimately save residents on their insurance premiums while also having better trained first responders.

It's been more than five months since the Lee county commission approved merging its EMS and fire services. It's a work in progress but a move that made sense.

 "It the wave of the future. It's what's been going on nationally. We need to have firefighters and EMS that are dual trained and can respond to either a medical emergency of a fire," said Lee County Manager Ron Rabun.

Paramedics are currently in the training phase of becoming certified firefighters which could come as soon as February. It's a move Rabun says will benefit home owners by lowering their ISO rating.

"The actual insurance savings could range from 5% to 20%. It's unknown what they might do but they can be significant savings," said Rabun.

This week the county named current EMS Director Bobby Watkins as the interim Director of Public Safety. "He's here on an interim basis but he'll begin to guide the combined department and give it a little more push," said Rabun.

Watkins will oversee plans to eventually cross train firefighters to become paramedics and build a volunteer fire department as well as other long term goals. And it's something 24 departments around the state are already doing.

"That's the idea is to have a person that dual trained that can save a life and fight a fire. It's more efficient and better for the customers."

Bobby Watkins will remain EMS Director while serving as the Public Safety director.

James Howell will also remain county fire chief. No word on when a full time director will be named.

 

Copyright 2013 WALB.  All rights reserved.

  • More WALB News10 HeadlinesMore News HeadlinesMore>>

  • The Latest: Irma weakens into a tropical depression

    The Latest: Irma weakens into a tropical depression

    Monday, September 11 2017 3:27 AM EDT2017-09-11 07:27:29 GMT
    Tuesday, September 12 2017 2:42 AM EDT2017-09-12 06:42:09 GMT
    Irma weakened to a Category 1 storm as the massive hurricane zeroed in on the Tampa Bay region early Monday after hammering much of Florida with roof-ripping winds, gushing floodwaters and widespread power outages.More >>
    Irma weakened to a Category 1 storm as the massive hurricane zeroed in on the Tampa Bay region early Monday after hammering much of Florida with roof-ripping winds, gushing floodwaters and widespread power outages.More >>
  • Still time to register for Camp HEAL

    Still time to register for Camp HEAL

    Wednesday, September 20 2017 4:02 PM EDT2017-09-20 20:02:09 GMT
    There are just three weeks left to register for Archbold's Camp HEAL. (Source: WALB)There are just three weeks left to register for Archbold's Camp HEAL. (Source: WALB)

    There are just three weeks left to register for Archbold's Camp HEAL.

    More >>

    There are just three weeks left to register for Archbold's Camp HEAL.

    More >>
  • Bainbridge utility crews focus on safety

    Bainbridge utility crews focus on safety

    Wednesday, September 20 2017 4:00 PM EDT2017-09-20 20:00:55 GMT
    (Source: WALB)(Source: WALB)

    On Wednesday, Georgia Power and utility crews from Bainbridge spent the day talking about safety, after Tropical Storm Irma leaving thousands without power and hundreds of trees down.

    More >>

    On Wednesday, Georgia Power and utility crews from Bainbridge spent the day talking about safety, after Tropical Storm Irma leaving thousands without power and hundreds of trees down.

    More >>
Powered by Frankly