LAX First Responders Will Now Arrive on Bicycles to Reduce Unnecessary Ambulance Calls - NBC Southern California

LAX First Responders Will Now Arrive on Bicycles to Reduce Unnecessary Ambulance Calls

Instead of always sending a truck or ambulance, two advanced life support cycle teams are now responding to calls

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    LAX First Responders Will Now Arrive on Bicycles to Reduce Unnecessary Ambulance Calls
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    International air travelers are processed by US Customs and Border Protection agents upon arrival to Bradley International Terminal at Los Angeles International Airport (LAX), on December 10, 2009 in Los Angeles, California.

    First responders to injured travelers at Los Angeles International Airport are now available to arrive on bicycle from within the complex in an effort to reduce the number of unnecessary ambulance and fire truck calls, airport officials announced Wednesday.

    The six-month trial program between Los Angeles World Airports and the Los Angeles Fire Department was begun because LAFD data show that the majority of emergency medical service incidents at LAX do not result in ambulance transports to the hospital, making the practice of routinely sending fire trucks and rescue ambulances to the airport inefficient.

    Instead of always sending a truck or ambulance, two advanced life support cycle teams are now responding to calls, supported by an advanced provider response unit staffed with a nurse practitioner and a firefighter/paramedic, all located in the LAX terminals.

    "This pilot program allows the LAFD to provide additional quick-response firefighter/paramedics at Los Angeles International Airport to serve the traveling public as well as the hundreds of people who work at the airport," LAFD Chief Ralph Terrazas said.

    The ALS cycle teams will consist of two operational shifts Tuesday through Friday, from 5 a.m. to 1 a.m., and the advanced provider response unit will be working Monday through Thursday, from 5 a.m to 3 p.m.

    "With more than 200,000 passengers at LAX each day, plus the thousands of employees, it takes to run the fourth-busiest airport in the world, getting appropriate medical care to sick or injured guests and workers is very important to us," Board of Airport Commissioners Vice President Valeria Velasco said. "We believe this pilot program will enhance the quality of care at the airport, a crucial part of improving the guest experience"

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