Emergency care truck gets life-saving device | VailDaily.com

Emergency care truck gets life-saving device

Scott N. Miller
Vail Fire Chief John Gulick, left, happily accepts an automated external defibrillator device from Fred Morrison oof the Eagle County Health Service District. The district has now given three of the defibrilltors to the fire department. The devices can be used to save people whose hearts have stopped suddenly.

VAIL, COLORADO – Every second counts in a medical emergency. Thanks to a gift from the local ambulance district, Vail firefighters may be able to save a few more lives.The Eagle County Health Service District, the ambulance district that serves the valley from the top of Vail Pass to Wolcott, recently gave the Vail Fire Department a new automated external defibrillator for the department’s new quick-response truck. The unit will be on duty in the next few weeks, Vail Fire Chief John Gulick said.

The new truck, built on a heavy-duty Chevrolet pickup chassis, will be able to respond to calls on-road and off. The truck is compact enough to zip firefighters along the town’s bike paths, as well as to the fairways of the Vail Golf Course.The new defibrillator is identical to two the ambulance district has already given the fire department. Those units are on the town’s first-out-the-door full-sized fire trucks at the stations in East Vail and Vail Village.

Those machines, as well as a handful of similar devices throughout town can save more than a dozen lives a year, said Fred Morrison of the ambulance district. “There’s good data that says when you put (defibrillators) in the hands of people, you save lives,” Morrison said.

That’s especially true in Vail, where the 8,150-foot elevation can prompt health problems for visitors from lower places.Besides altitude-related problems, lightning can strike golfers, Gulick said, making the truck’s ability to get to any fairway on the golf course even more important.While the automatedVail, Colorado

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