Town’s new rescue offers smooth ride for patients, low maintenance costs

Town’s new rescue offers smooth ride for patients, low maintenance costs

NORTH SMITHFIELD – For the second time in three years, the town has replaced an aging and outdated rescue vehicle with a state-of-the-art new one, creating maximum safety and an unusually smooth ride for workers and patients, say safety officials.

North Smithfield Fire Chief Joel Jillson announced that the town purchased a 2017 Ford-550 Life Line Rescue/Ambulance from Specialty Vehicles of North Attleboro, Mass. Rescue 2 is now in service and quartered at Fire Station 2, located at 1470 Providence Pike.

William LaBarre, EMS and IT coordinator for North Smithfield Fire & Rescue Service Inc., said the new rescue cost more than $200,000. An extended service plan will help save money in maintenance costs far into the future, he said. The other rescue vehicle also has an extended warranty from Ford.

The four-wheel drive vehicle gives rescue personnel the ability to reach patients in snow, sand or mud, said LaBarre. Previous trucks were heavy and low to the ground, putting them at risk of getting stuck, especially in a rural setting.

After replacing another aging rescue, all of the town’s front-line rescues are less than three years old, said LaBarre.

“This new truck is identical to our Rescue 1, makes finding equipment easier, and more efficient,” he said. “Scheduled maintenance is easier since the two take the same parts.

Both trucks were designed with the crew in mind, for ease of use and safety.

The new truck has a four-point harness system for the crew in the back, the patient has a five-point harness system, and the stretcher has the ability to withstand tremendous force.

“There is great emphasis on the crew and patient safety in case of a crash,” said LaBarre.

All the lights inside and out are newer LED, to save on repair costs and wear and tear on the truck’s electrical system. The rear of the vehicle, as well as all the doors, are striped with a chevron pattern using reflective tape to aid in safety on the roadways.