Ten years ago, Rochester Hills Fire Chief Ron Crowell remembers residents having to wait an unnecessary time for an ambulance.
That wasn't acceptable, he said. So the city made a commitment to change.
The result was an EMS program that has since then serviced 31,000 patients. But even more impressive? The amount of time it takes to reach those patients.
Since 2002, the department's response time has decreased 48 percent: it now takes an average of less than five minutes for firefighters and EMS personnel to reach you in an emergency.
"We've reduced response times by nearly three minutes," said Crowell, who spoke to Rochester Hills City Councilmembers on Monday night. Mayor Bryan Barnett presented Crowell with a proclamation commending his department for a job well-done. In the audience, a crowd of firefighters and paramedics looked on.
Among the crowd: the Govern family of Rochester Hills. In January firefighters delivered their baby girl, Eliza, in an emergency situation in their home.
Here's a look at the Rochester Hills Fire Department, by the numbers:
- 31,000: Number of residents and visitors treated by the Rochester Hills Fire Department EMS Division in past 10 years.
- 10 years: Number of years of service of the fire department's EMS service.
- 40: Number of firefighters and EMS personnel who shook hands with Barnett and city councilmembers on Monday night.
- 5: Number of ambulances that transport patients daily.
- 4.76 minutes: Current average response time of the fire department.
- 60: Seconds allowed from the time firefighters receive a call to the time they are out the door of the station.
- 24/7: Number of hours and days the city's five fire departments will be staffed after Station 5 becomes fully staffed in 2013.
- $300,000: Revenue for the city from EMS transporting services.
- 98 percent: Customer satisfaction rating, according to a survey by the department.
City Council President Greg Hooper said the response time was a reflection of a job-well-done by the department. Hooper said he personally has had great experiences with the EMS services, who helped his mother.
"From a personal standpoint, I feel blessed," Hooper said. "As a community we'll stand behind public safety."
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