Dallas Fire-Rescue Chief: EMS Services Under ‘substantial Strain'

When Dallas Fire-Rescue Chief David Coatney rode out on an ambulance for a shift in southern Dallas on the night of New Year's Eve, his paramedics responded to a hectic 10 calls in 12 hours."I thought that was an anomaly because of New Year's Eve," Coatney said. "But then when I pulled the data, I found that was a normal shift for them."It's too normal for too many paramedics, Coatney said. He told members of the City Council's public safety committee on Monday that the rescue side of Dallas Fire-Rescue is under a "substantial strain" and needs more resources in the years ahead.Increasing call volume, a growing population and a shrinking department have spelled trouble for the city's emergency medical responders. Coatney said he's looking at several plans to reshape EMS service, but it's going to cost money.In the interim, Dallas Fire-Rescue officials will rely on the same system they always have: using overtime during peak hours to meet the demand.  Continue reading...

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