Cumberland County Putting Paramedics, EMTs On Bike Patrol
Posted February 26, 2002 1:41 a.m. EST
FAYETTEVILLE, N.C. — People in Fayetteville can feel safer on their streets during big events. The county is putting emergency workers on bicycles.
"It's like a mobile ER. We go to the patient and try to stabilize him until our transport unit can become available," said bike team leader Malcolm Davis.
Cumberland County Emergency Medical Service is trying out paramedics and emergency medical technicians on wheels. The ambulance service will offer bike medics for free during big events.
Organizers think two wheels will be able to ride to the rescue in places four wheels cannot get to.
"We can access our patients with added ease during crowded events like festivals. We can also patrol parades," paramedic Lori Ashcroft said.
Big pouches on the back of the bikes hold everything from defribillators to trauma supplies. In a business where every second counts, emergency workers said they hope to put the brakes on tragedy.
"It's going to save lives because of our response time with the defibrillator or whatever," emergency medical technician Jesus Rodriguez said. "Time is a big thing."
Members of the bike medic team had to pass a 2 1/2 mile endurance test. They will also go through additional obstacle course training to get them more prepared to manuever through crowds.