The Biddeford Fire Department, the Biddeford Board of Fire Commissioners and the City of Biddeford in a joint effort with the University of New England and the Biddeford Coastal Coalition recently announced the creation of an Emergency Medical Service (EMS) Rapid Response Unit staffed by UNE students known as EMS 1.
This EMS unit will serve as first responders until the City of Biddeford's Fire Department Rescue Unit arrives in the coastal sections of the city. With the exception of school breaks, EMS 1 is staffed 24 hours a day, entirely by UNE students who are certified Emergency Medical Technicians. EMS 1 includes a fully equipped SUV 4- wheel drive unit provided by the Biddeford Fire Department for response in all types of weather conditions.
Reduced Response Time Saves Lives EMS 1 responding directly from UNE or the Hills Beach Fire Station will drastically reduce the response time for medical calls in the Hills Beach, Biddeford Pool, Fortunes Rock and Granite Point areas of Biddeford. This is extremely important to the residents in these areas. At times this will cut the response time down dramatically for quicker on- scene care, which can save lives or reduce further injury.
"We are very proud of the students who are now members of the Biddeford Fire Department as volunteers along with our other volunteer firefighters," stated Rick Plummer, Biddeford Fire Chief. "These volunteers give up countless hours of time on call and responding to calls, as well as numerous hours training. This enhances our ability to provide better service to our coastal community."
He continued, "This has been a long process with a lot of assistance and support from the Fire Commissioners, the Biddeford firefighters, the city, UNE faculty and staff and the Coastal Coalition. We have all spent countless hours for nearly a year to make our efforts come to life as it has today. As fire chief I am proud to say that this project is now up and running smoothly. EMS 1 has already responded to a call last week at Hills Beach. This proves that working together as a community you can accomplish a lot."
The students of EMS 1 are: Casey Logan, Alyson Wobensnith, Christopher Newtown, Adam Rines, Justin Castonguay, Jonathan Berube, Todd Owen, Mary Cullen, Kathilyn Dalton, Scott Hamilton, Jacki Allen, Genevieve Allen and Mark Vadney.