New squad to be stationed at Fairfield Beach
MILLERSPORT – A brand new Horton ambulance on a Ford F-550 chassis will soon be in service at the Millersport Fire Department’s Fairfield Beach Station. It replaces a 1999 Horton model with nearly 180,000 miles.
It’s the department’s first ever four-wheel drive medic. “Fourwheel drive gives us the comfort of knowing we have some additional traction in the event we are called out during bad weather, or before the township plows have a chance to clear the roads,” Fire Chief Metthew Bergum explained.
The medic is also the department’s first built on a Ford truck chassis rather than on a van or commercial chassis. “Our goal was to provide a smoother ride for our patients while transporting over the rough country roads on the way to the hospital,” Bergum said.
The Horton ambulance body includes an SRS Lifeguard System which can deploy up to three airbags to keep a paramedic or EMT treating a patient from being violently thrown against a sidewall or equipment cabinet in the event of an accident. Opening both rear doors triggers a kneeling mechanism that lowers the height of the rear door, making it easier to load patients.
The patient cot is a new design that includes additional handholds to make it easier to get patients and associated medical equipment in the ambulance.
The medic includes a rear camera and communication system that allows the driver to see where he is backing and eases contact with anyone helping him back up. Medics can get into tight quarters at accident and fire scenes.
A committee of fire fighters led by Bergum that included Assistant Chief Bob Price, Battalion Chiefs Jerry Murphy and Rob Robertson, Paramedics Pat and Chris Redd and volunteer firefighter Tim Warner set the specifications. Price hopes to add a brush guard to protect its multiple radiators from deer strikes.
Horton ambulances are manufactured in nearby Grove City.