Make this page my home page
  1. Drag the home icon in this panel and drop it onto the "house icon" in the tool bar for the browser

  2. Select "Yes" from the popup window and you're done!

Police in EMS: Inter-agency cooperation is vital

Print Comment RSS

Adam K. Thiel Fire News in Focus
by Adam K. Thiel

Police in EMS: Inter-agency cooperation is vital

Citizens and their elected officials must also understand the implications, however temporary, for all the involved agencies

By Adam K. Thiel

Editor's note: When Collier paramedics need an extra set of hands at Immokalee medical emergencies, Collier deputies already on scene could be called on to ride in the rear compartment of ambulances with patients. Chief Adam K. Thiel looks at the issues involved below.

It certainly is not uncommon for law enforcement agencies to assist fire and EMS departments with patient care.

In some jurisdictions, the local sheriff's office or police department is actually the primary provider of EMS, and even fire protection, response.

However they are deployed, inter-agency cooperation is always vital in these relationships, and that's certainly a positive dimension to this case, in marked contrast to another story on FireRescue1 this week of the fire chief cleared of fireground wrongdoing.

I think the central issue is addressed by several of those quoted in this story, who speak of the arrangement as a way to "bridge the gap," and not a permanent fix.

The question is whether or not the citizens and their elected officials understand the implications, however temporary, for all the involved agencies.

There will undoubtedly be an emergency incident, at some point in the future, where every sheriff's deputy, EMS provider, and firefighter onscene will be needed to do those things only they are trained to do.

At that point there will be difficult choices to make about what gets done, when, and by whom.

Those choices will have consequences, and it's vital to make sure the at-large public understands them.

Stay safe!

About the author

With more than two decades in the field, Chief Adam K. Thiel FireRescue1's editorial advisor is an active fire chief in the National Capital Region and a former state fire director for the Commonwealth of Virginia. Chief Thiel's operational experience includes serving with distinction in four states as a chief officer, incident commander, company officer, hazardous materials team leader, paramedic, technical rescuer, structural/wildland firefighter and rescue diver. He also directly participated in response and recovery efforts for several major disasters including the 9/11 terrorist attacks, Tropical Storm Gaston and Hurricane Isabel.

The comments below are member-generated and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of or its staff. If you cannot see comments, try disabling privacy and ad blocking plugins in your browser. All comments must comply with our Member Commenting Policy.

Back to previous page

 Most Popular

All Popular Articles
Featured Product Categories
SCBA Stabilization and Lifting Equipment Power Management T-Shirts Apparatus Accessories
View All Categories

Today's Top Stories

Saturday, April 25, 2015

Line-Of-Duty Deaths

Curtis Nordsick -   - [Wrightsville, Pennsylvania] Andrew Zalme -   - [Dakota City, Nebraska] Steven Ackerman -   - [Brandon, South Dakota]

Submit information on fallen firefighters in your area.

Line of Duty Deaths

FireRescue1 Exclusive

Full Story...
FDIC 2015 Product Review
Here's the newest and most interesting firefighter gear and technology from the annual conference.
Full Story
Past Exclusives

Featured Columnist

Ken Lavelle <br><i>Sponsored by Masimo</i> Ken Lavelle
Sponsored by Masimo

The Rehab Zone
All Columnists