By MARK EVANS
Ste. Genevieve County Ambulance District personnel will begin having smaller Transit vans, as well as a gas and a diesel truck for backups at each of its three houses.
The ambulance board agreed to do so at its March meeting, rescheduled from Thursday, March 18 to Monday, March 15.
The Transits are less expensive to buy and get essentially double the gas mileage of full-size ambulances.
Kendall Shrum, district director, went to North Carolina last week to pick up the district’s latest remounted ambulance. The new truck was scheduled to go to Columbia on Monday for radios, graphics and powerload install. It should be in service by April 1. The district has one more truck that can be remounted.
After that, new vehicles will have to be purchased to maintain the fleet.
During his director’s report, Shrum said that the current average en route response time is 2.3 minutes and the average drive time is 8.9 minutes. These figures are slightly better than in the past.
He hopes new reporting software will allow the district to track the amount of times House 2 and 3 are left empty due to transfers.
In looking at equipment, Shrum reported that the 4-wheel drive trucks have been decent. One has had a transmission problem and another has had a problem with the alternator.
There was also a problem with a powerload making a popping noise last week, with a larger patient on it. The powerload and the truck were taken out of service and were inspected by Stryker on Wednesday. It is believed that this is the newest powerload and should be covered under warranty.
Shrum said the Zoll monitors will be here in April.