The Atlanta Fire Chief remarked to local leaders that the city should consider starting its own ambulance service. The reason is the long delays between first response and ambulance pickup inside the city. Fox 5 reported on the matter.
Last month, there was an 85-year-old crash victim lying with a hurt back on the interstate. First responders got her on a spine board to stabilize her, but it took over an hour for Grady EMS to come onto the scene to take her to the hospital.
Atlanta firefighters are allowed to stabilize victims, but they cannot transport them to the hospital. Only Grady EMS could in the area where the crash happened. There were two crashes that morning and the ambulance went to the wrong wreck.
Fortunately, the woman was able to get the hospital. She recovered well, but officers were also frustrated at the delays. Audio from 911 revealed their frustration with dispatch about the problem.
Councilman Dustin Hills and Chief Rod Smith of Atlanta Fire Rescue both expressed their concerns with Grady EMS and their delays. Grady has acknowledged that increasing traffic and call volumes are bogging down their services.
This is why the fire chief suggested that the city may need to start its own ambulance run to take the pressure off of Grady.