Fire Chief Mike Spadt said Lincoln Fire and Rescue this week received the first of 11 new ambulances, which are being built in St. Paul, Minnesota. The department has been using rental ambulances since assuming ambulance service for Lincoln and Lancaster County on January 1, 2001.
"The arrival of the ambulances completes the implementation of the Fire Department providing ambulance service," said Mayor Don Wesely. "The statistics for the first three months of service show that the Fire Department is doing an excellent job. With these new, modern ambulance vehicles, our emergency personnel can do an even better job of providing patient care."
"These ambulances are equipped with state of the art medical equipment and the latest safety features and communications equipment," said Chief Mike Spadt. "Four more ambulances are expected to arrive in about one week. The other six units will be arriving throughout May, and we plan to have all the new ambulances in service by the end of next month."
Safety equipment includes an "opticom" system to control intersection spotlights; built-in child safety seats; and automatic chain systems for poor driving conditions. In the patient compartments, sharp corners and ceilings are padded to protect the paramedics as they care for patients while en route to the hospital. The compartments are designed to transport up to two patients on stretchers.
In its first quarter year of service, the Department, which anticipated responding to about 24 calls per day, responded to an average of 38.7 emergency and 7.5 non-emergency calls per day. Spadt said the average response time for all life threatening calls was 5 minutes and 34 seconds. The city requires a response time of eight minutes or less to 90 percent of the emergency calls, with a goal of responding within six minutes.