1. #1
    Firehouse.com Guest

    Default Quick Response Unit

    Our department is a combination of career and part-time firefighters. We serve a population of approximately 8,000 residents.
    Currently we have been trying to insitute a Quick Response Unit to supplement the EMS provider in our area but have had little success with our local politicians. I'd like to hear from others in similar size towns who are providing this service and how they succeeded in getting their program off the ground.

  2. #2
    Firehouse.com Guest


    Hello chief, My department has had a "first responder" program for quite a few years. We don't have an ambulance either, but we are dispatched on all ALS calls in our first due response area. It was at our descretion to provide this service, and it is very easily maintained s long as the members support it. The vehicle is a 1994 chevy suburban, equiped with BLS equip., AED, and collar kit, and backboard. 385 EMS calls last year out of 1023. Minimum staffing for this unit (we try)is two EMT's.Equipment is exchanged with whatever EMS agency we are dealing with, and very rarely have any difficulties. Feel free to e-mail me if you need a more in depth explanation. Hope I've helped...

  3. #3
    Firehouse.com Guest


    Yea, our department is in the beginning stages of implementing a QRV (quick response vehicle)approach. Up until last year our department responded to medical calls only when requested by EMS. Even MVA's. Today we are dispatched along with EMS to All ALS calls as well as MVA's but serve only as a first responder. Our firefighters are certified Medical Responders. It seems our department would like to resume the only when requested response with our engine companies, and feel that the QRV's will get these engines off the streets for Medical calls. They want to staff them with two firefighters. It has been my observation that these engines are needed because of the manpower more than anything else. Most of the ALS calls they make they are going to the hospital with the ambulance to pick up personnel. Also, on MVA's, the firefighters are all busy. With the QRV's They will still need to request an engine when there is fluid down, to do extrication, major trauma, for manpower, and when a vehicle is overturned. It would seem that these QRVs are just going to add to the response and confusion and clutter the scene. Especially when there is going to be three of them compared to eight engine companies. Response times are once again going to be delayed (which is why we started running the engines in the first place.) due to the fact that there are only three QRV's. Engines will still have to back them up. I realize that all departments are different and it seems that smaller departments may benefit from these units a little better since there engines are kept in service, and not out lolygagging on a sore toe. A QRV should subtract from the wear and tear on engines and be a little easier to maneuver in and around town.

  4. #4
    Scott Clark
    Firehouse.com Guest


    Hi chief51,
    Politician's care about one thing, how they can spend the taxpayers money and make themselves look good. Have you tried educating them on the positive values of a quick EMS response? Have you had other organizations come in and explain their programs. Do you have access to your Ambulance coverage response times? Then can you compare them unfavorably to your response times? You need show them you can beat the Ambulance to the scene and be able to initiate care prior to their arrival. Also dig up past alarms that could have been changed with this type of response unit. Also show them how you can make money from an EMS response unit. Because we all know there is more money for EMS than there is for Fire/Rescue. And one last idea, petition the voters, remember election time is always near by! Good luck and don't take no for an answer.

  5. #5
    Firehouse.com Guest


    We have been doing first responder in a primarily volunteer department for about 12 years. We respond on life threats where the squad will not be immediately responding and that accounts for about 250 runs, plus we take alot in if we are close. We have gone through alot of combos and found they all work kinda well. We started with one rescue pumper that did the first responder, then 2 smaller pick up/suburbans, then equipped the other engines and finally the truck and command car. We are just implementing AED's now and the whole thing works really well. The taxpayers get the service, we get the recognition AND our guys are trained and equpped to take care of each other. Its pretty much win-win. Where is the opposition?

  6. #6
    Firehouse.com Guest



    You state your department is combination of full-time (career) and part-time paid (i.e. callmen). Have you given thought to manning your own Rescue/Ambulance providing 'round the clock EMS coverage?

    Our department is also combination career and call. We serve a population of about 7500 and we man our own transport Rescue/Ambulance. We provide our citizens with 'round the clock ALS or BLS care depending on the call. Our full-time members are either EMT's or Paramedics as well as being firefighters. Most of our call dept. members are Firefighter/EMT's. We have an annual run volume of about 2000 (this includes both fire and EMS) with about 400 transports to local hospitals. Our department has been providing this service for a little more than twenty years. With the number of actual fire calls being down, providing 24-hour EMS coverage is a way to justify the need for a full-time department to our taxpayers.

    Let me know your thoughts on this either here or via regular e-mail.

    Talk later,

    Bill J.

    [This message has been edited by bjrdn (edited February 25, 1999).]

    [This message has been edited by bjrdn (edited February 25, 1999).]

  7. #7
    Firehouse.com Guest


    Our department started a first responder program three years ago. We operate during the time that the local ambulance paid crew is off 1700 to 0800. During the day we are dispatched if the ambulance crew is out on a call. We operate out of a Suburban with a crew of two carrying BLS equipment, splints, longboards and AED. Our first out engine carrys the same equipment. It took some time to get the program into operation. But working with all parties involved we got the program off the ground and has been very successful program.

  8. #8
    Firehouse.com Guest


    Chief, what seems to be the hang-up that the politcians have? Do they not want to save lives?

    I would be more than happen to send you information to help you. I am the Chief of an EMS agency, we have helped to establish 5 QRS units in our are.

    Bruce Chew, Chief
    Bucks County Rescue Squad

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