Before Hurricane Florence hit the southeastern shores of the United States, DeKalb County housed hundreds of emergency responders who were waiting on assignments to assist in the aftermath of the storm.
American Medical Response (AMR) DeKalb responded to the federal government’s request for EMS deployment for Hurricane Florence. AMR is the prime contractor for first response manual services for FEMA across the country, AMR’s Regional Director Terence Ramotar said at a Sept. 13 press conference. One of the cache sites is in DeKalb County.
“With hurricane Florence coming, this is the site where all EMTs, paramedics and first responders from across the country come through DeKalb County and this is where we get them ready,” Ramotar said. “We prep the ambulances and we send them out to one of three forward operating bases in Virginia, North Carolina and South Carolina.”
AMR deployed nearly 70 ambulances Sept. 13 to the forward operating bases, and there were another 100 EMT and paramedics at AMR DeKalb ready to back them up. There were also more than 100 responders who came from across the country to add additional support and cover the area.
“We’re really proud that this is here in DeKalb County,” Ramotar said. “It’s a prime location to cover anything that happens in the east region and we’re really happy to partner with DeKalb County on this effort.”
DeKalb County CEO Michael Thurmond thanked AMR and emergency responders for their efforts to help hurricane victims.
“We are very proud to partner with AMR,” Thurmond said. “The fact that they are here in DeKalb County is something we’re proud of and I want to commit to the leadership of AMR, to the men and women who serve, to the
here in DeKalb County that we will do everything that we can to support and assist them as we literally weather the storm that is impacting the southeastern United States. We’re proud of the work that they do, not just in the mist of a national disaster, but they do every day.”
Ramortar said emergency services in DeKalb will not be impacted.
“Our DeKalb County operations and our operations all across metro Atlanta are untouched,” he said. “Fortunately, we have a number of employees who had the time to volunteer and so we do have some DeKalb and metro Atlanta EMTs and paramedics participating in this effort.”
Thurmond said many of the emergency responders are housed in hotels in the county.
“I think we filled three to four hotels in DeKalb County as they wait for the task orders to be deployed,” Thurmond said. “We’re asking [DeKalb] citizens who come in contact with the [emergency responders] to say thank you. We ask you for your prayers and just be cognizant of the outstanding work and the challenge they will face in the coming days.”
Pic DSCN9279: AMR deployed nearly 70 ambulances Sept. 13 to the forward operating bases in North Carolina, South Carolina and Virginia.
Pic DSCN9290: EMTs, paramedics and first responders from across the country come through DeKalb County before heading to areas hit hard by hurricane Florence.