The Takoma Park Volunteer Fire Department has commissioned two bicycles to form an Emergency Medical Services (EMS) Bike Team.
The EMS bikes will be used for events with large crowds such as parades, festivals, races, farmer’s markets and concerts – all situations in which roads might be blocked off or crowded, potentially delaying an ambulance.
“Bikes are quicker to medical emergencies in crowds,” said Firefighter Rescuer Adam Bearne. “The bikes will be right in the crowd where they’re needed.”
The EMS bikes are designed to transport equipment for a wide range of medical emergencies from First Aid to respiratory distress to cardiac arrest. The medical equipment can also be easily removed from the bikes.
An Emergency Medical Technician (EMT) on one of these bikes could ride directly to a building’s entrance and go inside with the same basic equipment as an EMT from an ambulance.
The bikes are more maneuverable, safer in large crowds and can cut across parking lots or parks, said Bearne.
The two EMS bikes are custom-made to match the Takoma Park fire trucks and are fully adjustable. They come with emergency lights, a personal address system and a siren.
The Fire Department will partner with the Takoma Park police cyclists for training and to coordinate emergency responses.
The EMS bikes will be put into service at the Fourth of July Parade next week.