LOGAN COUNTY, W.Va. (WSAZ) -- Members of one community are crossing their fingers they won't have any emergencies any time soon.
That’s because their EMS station is now closed because of health concerns.
Several of the six employees at the Harts Creek EMS station have reported getting sick at the same time, possibly because of mold in the building.
Dave Maynard, the Chief of Operations for Logan County EMS, says experts will soon be in to figure out whether the root of the problem is indeed inside the building.
For now, EMS crews from Harts Creek will be stationed 11 miles away in Chapmanville.
Harts Creek resident Trista Adams says it’s concerning hearing the station is closed.
"There are lots of sick people over here,” she said. “There are a lot of elderly people who can't drive or get out or get to the doctor. It's been a life saver many times."
Despite the closing, Maynard says people in Harts Creek shouldn't notice a difference in response time.
He says it's not rare for an ambulance in Harts Creek to be taking a patient to the hospital, and then if there's another EMS call there, a crew from Chapmanville would respond to it.
However, Adams says that's little consolation because they already had problems with the response time.
"We've learned to ask if the ambulance is coming from here or Chapmanville,” she said. “Then it takes at least 30 minutes to get here. There have been instances when people within distance to the ambulance station have had heart attacks, strokes, and we had to wait for the ambulance to get here from Logan or Chapmanville. Had the ambulance been in this station, the outcome wouldn't have been as bad as it was."
Maynard says they're also looking into the possibility of moving the Harts Creek EMS crews into the Harts Creek Fire Department.
“The health and welfare of our employees is our main concern right now,” he said.
There’s no word on when the station may go back into operation.
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