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Fulton County EMS Response To Gustav Cancelled Fri. Night




Ambulances and rescue personnel were preparing to travel to Louisiana to assist with the recovery from Hurricane Gustav, but their deployment was cancelled.

Andy Brodbeck, Archbold Fire Department chief and the Fulton County coordinator for the Ohio Fire Chief Emergency Response Plan, said he and Rod Cheney, Fulton County Emergency Management Agency interim director, were preparing paperwork, Friday night, Aug. 29, when the deployment was cancelled.

Whenever there is a disaster where additional rescue resources are needed anywhere in the U.S., the Ohio response plan is activated.

Brodbeck said he received a message from the fire chief’s group, asking for Type-II ambulances. A Type-II carries one paramedic and one emergency medical technician. The ambulances and crews would have been part of Ohio’s emergency response “strike team.”

Three Picked Out

Brodbeck said he contacted Cheney, who is also a paramedic with the Archbold-based Fulton County paramedic ambulance. Cheney’s job was to contact the Fulton County Commissioners, who own the ambulance, to see if they would give permission for the vehicles to leave the county.

The commissioners granted permission for three units.

Brodbeck said the ambulances selected were the backup vehicles from Fayette, Lyons, and Metamora, because those vehicles answer the fewest calls.

In the meantime, Brodbeck said several paramedics and EMTs had volunteered to go.

“We had plenty of personnel who were willing,” he said.

The crews would have to be prepared to be self-sustaining for 72 hours; in other words, they would have to supply their own food and water for three days, until other resources would become available.

Cancelled

Brodbeck said he and Cheney were filling out paperwork for the deployment, when they received the cancellation message.

Hurricane Gustav made landfall Monday morning as a Category 3 hurricane, which was quickly downgraded to a Category 2.

It came ashore west of New Orleans, La., which suffered some limited flooding; but it was nothing like the damage that resulted from Hurricane Katrina three years ago.

Areas west of New Orleans are reporting more damage and flooding, and thousands were without electricity on Tuesday.

The Ohio Fire Chief Emergency Response Plan is part of the National Incident Management System, which, Brodbeck said, came about after Katrina devastated much of New Orleans.


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