EMS levy brings four new ambulances to Mason County
MASON COUNTY, W.Va. (WSAZ) - An emergency agency in Mason County has a new look after purchasing four new ambulances Friday afternoon.
“It’s been probably before the first of the year,” said Mason County Emergency Medical Services (EMS) Director Elisabeth Lloyd. “There was a long wait time, you don’t just go to the car lot and pick one out, these are custom made to our specifications.”
On July 1, 2021, the new fire and EMS levy went into affect in Mason County, bringing roughly $104,000 annually for five years to the agency. Lloyd said the purchase will use the majority of their levy dollars, as each truck is around $100,000, not including equipment.
“We’re a different agency than we were five years ago, ten years ago or even 20 years ago,” Lloyd said. “Mason County, the commissioners and employees at Mason County EMS, have put a lot of attention and time into creating an EMS agency that our county citizens can be super proud of ... if they’re going to pass a levy, we want to give them something to show for it.”
Aside from the trucks having brand new equipment, they also have power cots that automatically go up and down. Lloyd said this will decrease the risk of injury to EMS workers.
“Last year alone, I think we had three or four workers comp claims just because of lifting injuries,” she said. “This is going to save our employees--back injuries and that kind of stuff.”
Right now, there are three EMS stations in the county: one in Point Pleasant, which has two trucks, one in Apple Grove and one in Mason. Both the Apple Grove and Mason stations have one truck each. This move will replace all four front line trucks the agency currently has.
Lloyd said they have one ambulance now with more than 300,000 miles on it and constantly have to dump money into repairs to keep it on the road.
“We had a couple that I would call newer and they were doing fine, but we were trying to rotate them out and keep miles off of them so they didn’t break down. We do a lot of out-of-town transports, we put a lot of miles on the trucks and we’re a very rural county, so we may travel 40 miles just for one call to get there ... that’s a lot of miles on these ambulances.”
Lloyd said without the help from her team, the county commission and public, none of this would have happened. She said the new trucks look completely different from the current ones -- as they are wanting to give the agency a new look.
“(The trucks) look totally different, a whole new look,” Lloyd told WSAZ. “We’ve completely rebranded, we’re a new agency (and) we’re all working hard to treat every patient in Mason County just like it was our family.”
The new trucks will go into service on Tuesday.
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