South Davis Metro Fire gets new ambulance as North Salt Lake continues growing
Aug 17, 2023, 12:32 PM
NORTH SALT LAKE, Utah — You can’t escape it: growth and new neighborhoods are everywhere in Utah. Firefighters and paramedics based in North Salt Lake have sure noticed it.
“The need is here. The call volume is surging,” said Jeff Larsen, EMS division chief for the South Davis Metro Fire Department.
North Salt Lake’s population has grown nearly 35% in the past decade, surpassing an estimated 23,000 residents as of this year.
Because of the growth, the South Davis Metro Fire Department, which services North Salt Lake, decided it needed a new ambulance for the fire station. The old ambulance had roughly 190,000 miles on it.
It took more than two years for @SDMFA to get this new ambulance. It was delayed a year because of supply chain issues and decreased workforce for the company building it. But it's now in service. We'll show you how its different and safer tonight on @KSL5TV at 6. #ksltv pic.twitter.com/aSpgS1ZDyN
— Alex Cabrero (@KSL_AlexCabrero) August 16, 2023
“Last year was our busiest year at this station,” Larsen. said “They ran 1,300 calls out of this station with the old ambulance that was out of here.”
That is nearly four calls a day, which is a lot for a station based in North Salt Lake.
The new ambulance was “pushed” into service last week, which is a tradition for fire departments.
It includes airbags throughout the back and better safety restraints to keep patients and crew safer if something happens.
However, it took nearly two years to get the ambulance, including about a year of delays.
“Since COVID, we have seen a huge backorder problem, supply problem, and we had to wait,” Larsen said.
Other departments across Utah and the country might have to look at ordering vehicles before they’re needed due to those delays. Stations are also trying to better maintain their current vehicles, which is something South Davis Metro is doing.
“We want to instill the importance of taking care of the fleet and the ambulances to our crew members that are out using them because of the turnaround time,” said Larsen. “If we can’t arrive on the scene safely, then we can’t help the community.”