Concerns raised about rescue response times
by Emily Blake
Jun 26, 2017 | 2609 views | 0 0 comments | 41 41 recommendations | email to a friend | print
HALIFAX- Selectboard members discussed emergency medical response at their regular meeting Tuesday evening.

At the end of the month, the Halifax EMS will no longer exist. Heidi Taylor, of Deerfield Valley Rescue, said this is a concern because of Halifax’s location.

“You’re quite a ways from us,” Taylor said. “It’s been very helpful to have somebody respond, even if it comes down to just hand-holding. At least that person knows that someone is on the way. It’s concerning that we won’t have that.”

Taylor said Deerfield Valley Rescue will offer any assistance they can to help revitalize interest in the town or get a class in Halifax for first responders. “I just think it’s a really important part of the EMS system,” Taylor said.

Mitchell Green said it’s “hard to keep up with the certification,” leading to a decrease in interest. Taylor mentioned that a lot of the education can be completed online, and that Deerfield Valley Rescue is available to help.

“Deerfield Valley’s door is always open for training too, as far as keeping up with some of that training,” Dennis Pike said. Some of the training can be done right at the Deerfield Valley Rescue squad house, Taylor said.

Pike wondered if the Halifax fire department could be used to respond to calls until rescue arrives.

“You could simply say (to the fire department), you’re not there in any medical capacity, but just to say that help is on the way,” Taylor said. “Sometimes just having someone show up at your door is important.”

Selectboard chair Lewis Sumner said the idea might be possible.

“There are a lot of things we can do,” Taylor said. “I just want to start the conversation, and see if you have people in your community who are interested in doing this.”

In other matters, Patty Dow suggested updating the town’s traffic ordinance. After having conversations with state police, Dow learned that the current speed ordinance is not specific enough, leading judges to throw out speeding tickets when they are contested in court.

“The town has not been getting the money that would be generated from these tickets,” Dow said. Dow provided the selectboard with copies of Guilford and Newfane’s speed ordinances to use as examples for how Halifax should update its own.

By creating an updated, detailed speed ordinance, the speed limits throughout Halifax will not change. “This just tightens up the loophole when (people contest speeding tickets in) court,” Brad Rafus said.

“I think it will be well worth the time to put into creating this new speed regulation ordinance,” Dow said.

Dow offered to assist in this project, and received the selectboard’s approval to begin working on it.

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