JAMESTOWN, NY (WNY News Now) – Jamestown’s only ambulance is out of commission, needing to borrow a working vehicle from another agency. Now the city is finally getting a second one, almost a year since lawmakers initially promised the much needed equipment.
In May of 2022, Jamestown officials pledged to improve public safety through additional hires and equipment. While later that month lawmakers unanimously approved four new firefighter and three police officer positions, only now is acquisition of a second ambulance underway.
“Having a second ambulance is certainly going to help us alleviate the burden that’s currently being placed onto our surrounding municipalities,“ explained Fire Chief Matt Coon. “One of my jobs as Fire Chief is to make sure that somebody responds to those, even if it is not our own agency. We already currently send personnel to those calls, so having that additional ambulance will certainly make our system more efficient.”
Currently the city’s only ambulance is not in operation, furthering the need.
“Ambulance 1 had a mechanical failure last week that was unexpected,“ stated Chief Coon. “It was a problem that was found when it went down for routine maintenance. We certainly recognise that we need additional resources to continue to answer those calls. We were fortunate that we could reach out to ALSTAR and borrow a piece of older equipment that they had.”
Once the second vehicle arrives crews will have to figure out the best spots to house both rescue transports.
“Perhaps there’s different ways, different areas, where could place those ambulances,“ explained Chief Coon. “It’s certainly not a done deal, and I’m happy to definitely have those conversations moving forward so we can deploy all of our resources as efficiently as possible.”
The only problem is lack of personnel. Without more firefighters it will be a challenge to operate both ambulances and the ladder truck.
“While it may result in the ladder truck being unavailable, it certainly would put another pumper as available, and be able to increase capacity that way,“ stated Chief Coon.
The resolution allocating $250,000 dollars in American Rescue Plan Act monies to purchase the vehicle was unanimously approved by city council.
Now that the second ambulance is funded, it will take two to six months depending on supplier availability, for the equipment to arrive.