First responders concerned about plans to move EMS unit - KLTV.com - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News

First responders concerned about plans to move EMS unit

SMITH COUNTY, TX (KLTV) -

An EMS unit stationed in northern Smith County may soon be removed, raising concern among many first responders in the area.

Right now, an East Texas Medical Center ambulance is fully manned at the Red Springs Volunteer Fire Department at all times.

Those working at the department say it has been vital in saving many lives over the past two and a half years.

Red Springs Fire Department hopes ETMC will reconsider their decision to move the ambulance.

"We run a lot of accidents on FM 14 and on the interstate. They're close and have a quicker response time than if they were called out of Lindale or Tyler," says Red Springs Volunteer Fire Department Chief Tim Thompson.

"Time, basically, means a lot when you're talking about possible cardiac arrest, or heart attacks or major wrecks. The paramedics can arrive on the scene and it's very valuable," says Lt. Charles Wilson.

A representative from East Texas Medical Center says the Red Springs area will not lose EMS capability, they're just not going to house the ambulance at Red Springs VFD anymore.

Friday at 7 p.m., Red Springs Volunteer Fire Department will host a meeting regarding the EMS unit being moved. ETMC representatives are expected to be there. All members of the community are invited to attend as well.

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