National EMS Week 2013 is May 19-25

National EMS Week is May 19-25 this year. The theme for 2013 is "EMS: One Mission. One Team."

Hamilton County Express publishes photos and write-ups about each of Hamilton County’s nine ambulance squads each EMS Week to honor the dedication of those who provide the lifesaving services of medicine's "front line." These pages are possible thanks to the support of advertisers who also want to show their support and honor the EMS volunteers who so generously give so many hours of their time for the sake of their family, friends and neighbors.


The Blue Mountain Lake Volunteer Fire Department received its first ambulance in 1938. In 1967 the ambulance corps was organized and named the Blue Mountain Lake Volunteer Ambulance Corps.

Currently we offer Basic Life Support services to Indian Lake Fire District 2, commonly known as the Blue Mountain Lake Fire District. We work under the authority of Mountain Lakes Regional EMS Council. Our medical director is Dr. John Broderick, of Adirondack Medical Center in Saranac Lake.

Advanced Life Support services are provided primarily by Indian Lake Volunteer Ambulance Corps and Long Lake Rescue Squad.

Blue Mountain Lake has a dedicated group of volunteers who assist the ambulance, including firemen, drivers, aides, EMTs and dispatchers. Current active ambulance members are Captain and EMT Gail Carmichael; aide Kathy Radler; and drivers Bob Radler, Bob Armstrong, Bob Lewin, Bob Curry, Tim Leach, Jim Pine, Ken Hinckley, Tom Johnson, Lynn Sessions and Ben Strader. We are in great need of volunteer EMTs.

We would like to thank the community for the outstanding support we receive, and thank the fire department for working so closely with us to make sure residents receive prompt, diligent care.

We are currently not in a 911 area. For emergencies, dial 352-7711. For non-emergencies dial 352-7710.

Donations can be mailed to BMLVAC, POB 114, Blue Mt Lake NY 12812.


Indian Lake Volunteer Ambulance Corps responded to 212 calls in 2012; 162 resulted in patients being transported to a hospital or a helicopter. Of these, 141 required advanced life support, which was provided from ILVAC resources in all but seven cases.

The corps operated two ambulances, both certified by the State of New York for ALS, which means the squad can staff the rig with at least one person qualified to start an IV, administer drugs, draw bloods, perform advanced airway measures, read electrocardiograms and more and properly assess patients needing interventions and supplies normally carried in the ambulance.

Like most rural squads, ILVAC always needs new volunteers to serve as EMTs, ALS technicians, drivers, dispatchers and administrators. We train or arrange the training of our volunteers. Those whose positions require state certification (all levels of EMTs) are trained by NYS-certified instructors teaching state-mandated curricula from either the Mountain Lakes or Adirondack-Appalachian regional EMS council. Our rigs are well equipped and the service is challenging, interesting and appreciated.


Inlet Volunteer Ambulance Squad began serving the Inlet community in 1956. We currently have over 30 active members ranging from paramedics to certified first responders and drivers.

Inlet runs two advanced life support ambulances: a 2006 Road Rescue and a 2009 four-wheel-drive Wheel Coach. Both are equipped with a Lifepak 12 defibrillator / monitor that can transmit a patient's 12-lead electrocardiogram to the receiving emergency department prior to arrival.

Elected officers are Chairperson Amanda Miller, Vice Chair Bob Gordon, Secretary Becky Townsend, Squad Captain Matt Miller and Assistant Squad Capt. Ron Leszyk.

The officers and members thank the community for continued support; including Hamilton County Express and Adirondack Express for recognizing our efforts to make this community a safe place to live, work and play.

We have some wonderful fundraisers planned for the year including our always popular Gary Rudd Memorial Gold Tournament Aug. 18 at Inlet Golf Course and our annual Clam Bake Sept. 7 at Inlet Fire Hall.

Donations can be sent to Inlet Volunteer Ambulance Squad, POB 300, Inlet NY 13360.


Long Lake Rescue Squad was formed in 1974. We became New York state certified in 1976, and have maintained that status since.

The squad has 14 active members: three EMT-Bs, Pat Benton, Kathy Buxton and Stephanie Hample and one EMT-B in training, Patrick Curtain; four AEMT-CCs (Critical Care), Don Howe, Virginia Jennings, Carl Turner and Stephanie Wells; and six drivers trained in First Aid and CPR, Patrick Gibbs, Christopher Hample, Eric Hample, Nicolas Luxford, Chuck Taylor and Shawn Wright.

The squad is funded by taxpayers through Long Lake Fire District 1, billing for transportation and donations. We have two fully equipped Advanced Life Support ambulances to cover an area of approximately 350 square miles.

In 2012 we responded to 169 calls, transporting the majority to Adirondack Medical Center in Saranac Lake and the remainder to Glens Falls Hospital. It is about 90 miles round-trip to Saranac Lake and 150 miles round-trip to Glens Falls. Each call takes between three and five hours, depending upon destination.

Long Lake has 911 and is dispatched though the Essex County 911 system.

New members are always needed. As more and more people join the work force, daytime coverage has reached a very precarious level.

Donations may be mailed to Long Lake Rescue Squad, POB 415, Long Lake NY 12847.


Morehouse Volunteer Fire Department Ambulance Squad is very thankful our members, who give of themselves to help others and take time out of their busy schedules to make the middle of the night run, regardless of the weather; and for all the countless hours of schooling, training sessions and practices.

A lot of dedication and hours go into becoming an EMT or certified first responder, but it is very rewarding. All training is at no cost as long as you are a member of the department.

All our local ambulance squads need volunteers, so please consider volunteering with your local ambulance.

The squad has 10-12 calls a year. Anyone interested is asked to contact Amanda Seeley at (315) 826-7509 or Bill Farber at 826-7744.

Members include Captain and EMT-D Amanda Seeley; Co-Captain and EMT-D William Farber; EMT-Ds James Luck and MaryAnn Mosher; and drivers Brian Taylor, Mike Korpon, Wes Mosher and Ted Bertella.


Piseco Volunteer Fire Department acquired its first ambulance in 1958, and this service evolved into Piseco Volunteer Ambulance Corps, which continues to be part of PVFD.

We provide emergency care and transport within the Town of Arietta, and have mutual aid agreements with nearby towns and ambulance services.

PVAC is fortunate to have a solid inventory of modern equipment. It also has well-trained, experienced drivers and EMTs, but not enough of them. We are in desperate need of help.

We are trained and ready to respond to all situations including non-trauma medical emergencies, vehicle mishaps, fires and water and wilderness rescue.

Each year brings major expenses, and we are very appreciative of all those who make donations. Special thanks to PVFD Auxiliary and the Twigs for their generous support.

For information on becoming an EMT or driver contact Captain Craig Small at 548-5005 or Lieutenant Laura Morehouse at 548-4319 / Donations may be sent to Piseco Volunteer Ambulance Corps, POB 58, Piseco NY 12139.


Raquette Lake Ambulance Squad is a part of the all-volunteer Raquette Lake Fire Department. We believe our 76-mile run to Utica is the longest in the state.

The squad has five EMT-Basics, Louis Burke, Mitch Edelstein, Kurt Murdock, Ann LaFrance and Tom Mattice. Besides our ambulance we have a snowmobile and rescue sled. This provides vital emergency transportation during the winter.

The squad meets the first Friday of each month at 7 p.m. at the fire hall. Donations may be mailed to Raquette Lake Fire Department, POB 160, Raquette Lake NY 13436.


Speculator Volunteer Ambulance Corps responded to its first call April 27, 1970, 43 years ago.

We currently have 31 members: four certified first responders, 13 EMTs, two paramedics, one critical care technician and 11 motor vehicle operators. Sounds like a lot, but numbers don't tell the whole story.

In 2012 the corps answered 146 calls, volunteered 1,140 man-hours, traveled over 9,300 miles and spent well over 1,000 man-hours in training. That does not include the time spent on administrative duties, equipment and vehicle maintenance, community events, etc.

It is a real challenge to schedule enough volunteers to cover the 168 hours in each week. If you are interested in joining give us a call at 548-5911.

Every penny of our operating expenses is raised by donations; no local tax money is involved. A sincere thank you to all who assist us. When you help us with your tax-deductible contributions you are truly helping everyone in your community.

All our members are volunteers; we have no payroll and SVAC has never sent a bill for services. Donations can be sent to Speculator Volunteer Ambulance Corps, POB 282, Speculator NY 12164.

Here are some facts about us you may not know.

• We cover the Town of Lake Pleasant and the Village of Speculator, and provide mutual aid as requested and as available.

• The year-round population in our service area is about 1,000; the summer daily population is reliably estimated at about 11,000.

• Our primary operating territory covers about 52 square miles.

• We have three state campgrounds, three children's camps and one large family resort in our territory.

• About 45 percent of our calls are trauma-related and 55 percent are medical problems.


Wells Volunteer Ambulance Corps was founded in 1950 and was part of Wells Fire Company until 1985, when the Town of Wells became owner of the ambulance. The town provides insurance, some medical supplies, vehicle maintenance and fuel.

WVAC is part of the Adopt-A-Highway Program, sponsors the annual Wells Central School Halloween Party and awards a scholarship to a WCS senior going into the medical field.

The corps holds a 20-week raffle and mails an annual fundraising letter to help raise money for equipment, communications, training materials and programs.

The corps also sponsors a can / bottle redemption center at the Old American Legion Building. It is open the second Tuesday of each month from 6-7 p.m.

Meetings are the first Thursday of each month at 7 p.m. Volunteers are needed for emergency medical technicians, drivers and dispatchers or social members. Teens age 14 and up are welcome to join the Explorers and become part of this volunteer organization.

The emergency number for the ambulance or fire department is 924-2354. Please send donations to Wells Ambulance Corps, POB 550, Wells NY 12190.