Carteret Fire Department Begins 24/7 EMS Coverage

A Carteret Fire Department EMS vehicle (Photo courtesy of the Borough of Carteret)

A Carteret Fire Department EMS vehicle (Photo courtesy of the Borough of Carteret)

CARTERET —  In the wake of the Carteret Volunteer First Aid Squad shutting its doors and ceasing operations, the Carteret Fire Department EMS division will expand operations from 12 hours a day to 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, Mayor Dan Reiman announced.

The private, non-profit Carteret Volunteer First Aid Squad was first established in 1934. In 1999, due to the inability of the volunteer squad to staff day time hours, the borough selected Rural Metro Inc. to provide EMS coverage on weekdays, while the under-staffed volunteer organization continued to provide coverage on weekends. The Carteret Fire Department initiated an EMS division in 2002, replacing Rural Metro and providing weekday coverage. In 2010, the volunteer squad began hiring paid EMTs, ending 76 years of volunteer service. To offset the costs associated with the new structuring, the organization began billing Carteret residents in November of that year.

Because of its subsequent financial insolvency, the Carteret Volunteer First Aid Squad, a private non-profit corporation, announced that it would cease its operations as of March 31, giving the borough five days’ notice. As of April 1, the Carteret Fire Department’s EMS division has provided around-the-clock coverage to Carteret residents and will now do so on a permanent basis as part of the Carteret Fire Department’s EMT division.

Reiman said, “The Carteret Volunteer First Aid Squad chose to cease operations on March 31st of this year – We were given 5 days’ notice that they were financially insolvent and were closing their doors. We would like to wish them luck and thank them for their service to our community over the past 8 decades. The volunteers and the paid staff did a good job and they should be commended. Our Fire Department’s EMT division, which was handling these services from 7 a.m.-7 p.m. daily, was immediately expanded to a 24/7 operation. The transition has been seamless.”

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