NEW LEXINGTON — Resources are scarce in the southern part of Perry County as emergency medical services are in what has been described as a crisis due to lack of volunteer power. For some time now, the New Lexington Fire Department has been being proactive by offering partnerships with other first responding entities in the region.
“We’re very aware what is going on in Corning,” New Lexington Fire Department Chief Fain told The Perry County Tribune.
As of last Tuesday night, Chief Fain along with his crew was able to secure a partnership to help assist first responding efforts in the southern region of the county. With the newly appointed fire chief in Corning, New Lexington will be responding to incidents that happen in the village. According to Fain, Monday will be the start of the partnership if the new chief gets all his paperwork in place.
“We are toned the exact same time they are so we can be in route with our squad,” Fain stated. “We now have an agreement with Shawnee and Corning.”
Due to a lack of volunteers, fire and EMS departments in the southern region of the county find themselves at a loss when it comes to responding to emergency requests. Recently, the department in New Lexington has been able to obtain a second EMS vehicle to help with calls in the village.
Roughly six months ago, Chief Fain and his assistant chief met together after they noticed a “growing” need for more EMS services in all villages in the south. Looking at the numbers it could cost, both made an effort to not put the department in the hole when it came to getting the much needed medical vehicle.
“We figured out what it was going to take and we already had the trucks there, we just needed to make sure we had a few additional people for crews to make that happen,” Fain stated.
Fain approached the Village Council of New Lexington about the need for assistance. According to the chief, the council was very supportive as long as the efforts would keep the department out of debt.
“It was a very… fortuitous event that happened for us that was able to help the folks down south,” Fain stated.
Fain stated that the second EMS truck has been running good as it has already made several runs since being in operation last Sunday, Feb 2. The second truck has a crew that works 12 hours currently but Fain hopes to get the second crew going 16 hours a day.
“We don’t plan on running it 24 hours a day,” Fain said. “We only plan on getting it up to 16 hours a day at the peak times we have runs.”
On day one of the new vehicle being in operation, within 45 minutes, the crew was already set and ready to respond.
“We were on top of it,” Fain stated. “And Every day it’s been like that.”
Before the new addition to the department, Fain’s crews would respond to call in Corning and other southern parts of Perry County. Instead of being empty when there is an incident in the south, the department now has additional resources to help in the area if another call comes in.
“This if going to be a win, win for everybody because of the fact that now when we service the folks down south we also still have a truck maintaining what we have here,” Fain explained.
Fain clarified that his department has no intentions of taking over operations in Corning. Instead, Fain and his crew want to help out villages that are in need of assistance as some departments attempt to get more resources.
“All we’re trying to do is supplement what they have or what they have not had in the past,” Fain clarified. “We are there just to help them.”