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Rural/Metro Safety Net Covers County Fair
Date:8/12/2009

HAMBURG, N.Y., Aug. 12 /PRNewswire/ -- Starting Wednesday and for 11 more days, the 170th Erie County Fair at the Hamburg Fairgrounds will spawn a small city, with as many as 100,000 visitors and staff at peak times.

Protecting the health of fairgoers by placing them under a protective emergency medical system safety net is primarily the responsibility of Buffalo-based Rural/Metro Medical Services.

The 550-employee Buffalo division places as many as 22 trained caregivers, five ambulances, two bike ambulances and two golf cart ambulances at the Fairgrounds for peak days.

Even on quieter days, a team of 13 emergency medical technicians, paramedics and supervisors staff an on-grounds Emergency Room, and maintain at least three ambulances, as well as the more mobile bicycle and golf cart-based ones.

"The Erie County Fair does an amazing job promoting and protecting the safety of all who visit," said Rural/Metro General Manager Adin Bradley. "But in a gathering this large, accidents serious and minor are going to occur and Rural/Metro is prepared and staffed to respond. We want Fair visitors to have fun, and know we've got their backs -- and the rest of them as well."

Open from 7 a.m. to after midnight on weekends, the fully equipped ER can and has responded to serious injuries and medical conditions, stabilized patients and delivered them swiftly to the nearest hospital.

A team of two EMT bicyclists, carrying all the necessary equipment, is used for quick response to medical emergencies, because they can move more rapidly through crowds of people that typically fill the Fair's roads and pathways. All teams are in communication and tied in to Fair security and Hamburg's Armor Volunteer Fire Department.

"We'll average about 50 calls a day through the run of the Fair, and our people have saved lives over the years," said Russ Dimitroff, Rural/Metro's regional manager. "The logistics and planning that go into this are complex, but the goal for the team on call is the same: Keep everyone safe so they can enjoy the Fair."

Typical complaints Rural/Metro handles include cuts and scrapes, sprains, minor injuries from falls, bee stings, and heat-related illnesses. Although rarely needed, Rural/Metro is also equipped and trained to respond to more serious complaints like chest pain or respiratory distress.


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SOURCE Rural/Metro Medical Services
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