New ambulance arrives
BY ALYSSA MEIER
The sirens wailed and lights flashed as the ambulance pulled around the corner, but for once, it was a happy occasion.
After over a year of planning, the Washburn Ambulance Service has a brand new emergency vehicle. The shiny new ambulance arrived last week to a crowd of cheering emergency service staff and community members. Among them was Mary Devlin, a Washburn emergency medical technician and emergency services board secretary.
Devlin, who recently received her 30-year certificate for national registry, explained the advantages of the new, truck-mounted, four-wheel drive ambulance versus having one in the form of a cutaway van, saying the truck will be a big improvement when it comes to winter weather and slushy or icy roads.
Squad leader Mark Lelm explained the dangers of not having a four-wheel drive ambulance up until this point.
"Once in awhile, we do go out in the country. About two years ago, we had to go out in a snowstorm and almost got stuck. We had an escort and they got stuck. So the four-wheel drive will really help with that," Lelm said.
The other ambulances that the service owns are both cutaway vans, which means the vehicle is all one piece, and that there is an opening to walk through between the cab and the patient compartment.