Ice, Snow Could Make Matters Worse For Shelby County Paramedics Already Stretched Thin

MEMPHIS.Tenn (localmemphis.com) -  The blast of winter weather Friday has area ambulance agencies concerned, with paramedics already slammed and stretched thin in recent days.

    EMT leaders tell Local 24 they’ve seen a sizable uptick in calls this week, due to a spike in flu calls and other emergencies.

    The Germantown fire chief said the peak ambulance runs in recent days were more than twice as many as a normal day.

    "In the ambulance services in this area, there's little catching your breath sometimes,” Germantown Fire Chief John Selberg said.

    In recent days, lulls in the action are increasingly rare for EMT’s in Germantown and throughout Shelby County.

"Some crews are rotating almost back to back to back because there's no down time,” Germantown Assistant Fire Chief Jeff Beaman said.

    Germantown Fire leaders said a rash of flu patients this week played a role in busier than normal shifts and an even busier situation once they arrive at hospitals like Methodist Germantown.

    This week, some Germantown paramedics waited up to five hours to move on to their next call.

"They are seeing a lot of patients in there with those ailments, backing up the emergency rooms,” Chief Selberg said. “The bed availability in the hospitals, so all the ambulance services in this area are seeing extended wait times at the hospital, waiting to offload the patient."

Now, first responders hope Friday’s winter weather event won’t make an already tough situation worse.

"You have people getting injured out on the ice, you have the opportunity for more vehicle accidents and things so that will add the challenge to us,” Chief Selberg said.

Shelby County first responders said December and January are typically the busiest months for ambulance services


Don't Miss

  • Find It
    Copyright 2018 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.
  • Win Tickets to See the RiverKings
    Copyright 2018 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.
  • Follow Us
    Copyright 2018 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.
  • Featured Employers
    Copyright 2018 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.
  • Wellness Network
    Copyright 2018 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

Trending Stories

Latest News