Liberty Regional Emergency Medical Services recently stationed an ambulance in Sunbury in an effort to decrease emergency-call response times on the county’s east end.
The new ambulance is being housed temporarily at the Eastern District Fire Department, which is privately owned. However, Liberty EMS Director Robin Todd said that the unit "will stay on the east end for sure."
"What we’re doing is looking at the numbers," Todd said. "It hasn’t been a full month yet."
Todd said that it will take at least two months of data-gathering before a firm decision is made on the truck’s final home. However, early indicators were good, she said, and showed a need for a unit east of Interstate 95.
"We’ve had probably six calls in 15 days within a five-mile radius of the station," Todd said.
"It’s nice because it gives us a little bit more coverage on the east side, especially east of I-95," said Jason Simmons, a Liberty EMS paramedic. "We had two trucks in Midway, but responding from (Midway), we’re adding about five-to-seven minute time on top of everything east of I-95."
According to Todd, Liberty EMS operates five ambulances seven days a week — three in Hinesville, one in Midway and the recently-added Sunbury unit.
Todd said that county Commissioner Marion Stevens helped coordinate the truck’s temporary housing in the Eastern District Fire Department.
"(The ambulance) is in a really good location there," Stevens said. "There’s a lot of citizens on the east-end that need attention, and this will help serve them."
"It just helps us covering the stretch of I-95 that we do, especially with the high traffic volume through there," Simmons added. "The closer we are to the high volume areas and the higher incident areas, the better we can provide patient care, because time is very, very critical in what we do. We want to get them on the way to the hospital and, hopefully, have them at the hospital within that first hour."
"We are pleased — thankful — to have housing," Todd said. "(Eastern District Fire Department Chief) Joe Martin has just bent over backwards helping us place our people, and we’re so thankful to him."