First Responders coming to Stanstead
Theresidents of Stanstead will have a new service, as of June 1st, to compliment the services of Ambulance Stanstead: a First Responders team of trained personnel from the town’s fire department who can come to the scene of certain kinds of health emergencies to provide assistance until the ambulance arrives.
“Our First Responders project will start on June 1st. Fifteen of our guys have been trained and the other thirteen will be trained in the next few months. They will respond only in the town of Stanstead to level one emergency calls: cardiac arrest or anaphylactic shock. The objective is to shorten the response time for these kinds of emergency situations, especially when the ambulance is out of town,” explained the town’s fire chief, Chris Goodsell. And with an average of more than 450 calls a year and only one ambulance, the ambulance is often far from home, en route to or from a Sherbrooke hospital.
As always, when faced with an emergency situation, Stanstead residents are to call 911, as they have in the past, and the appropriate personnel will be dispatched to their address. “I’d like to remind people that when they are faced with these situations that they make sure their address is visible, their driveway is clear, and there is someone to wave us down if possible,” said Mr. Goodsell.
“Some people think that when we get called out as First Responders that we’ll respond in a big fire truck, but that’s not the case. Ambulance Stanstead donated an old ambulance to the fire department and we have transformed it to meet the needs of first responders. Two people will respond in that vehicle but it cannot be used to transport patients,” said the fire chief.
People are still being warned not to start any brush fires. “We’ve had four or five brush fires so far this spring; the one in Ogden was big and it almost got away from us. Outdoor fires must be in a pit or contained.” Information, present conditions and regulations about outdoor fire safety can be found on the SOPFEU website.