Shawnee County ambulance service experiences rare blackout

TOPEKA, Kan. (KSNT) – You may not have noticed it yourself but Shawnee County’s ambulance service was without ambulances for a brief period Wednesday.

AMR Operations Manager Jon Antrim tells KSNT News it’s something that rarely happens but that was the case shortly after daybreak.

A blackout occurs when multiple calls come in at once time and not enough ambulances are available to respond to emergency calls.  The period lasted less than five minutes.

When that situation occurs, a plan is in place to respond to those calls.

“Our supervisor, staff, ALS equipped rapid response vehicle are able to first respond to a call with the fire departments, that’s another thing we rely on, our first responding partners to get there and start initial care while we have an ambulance in route in these situations.”

Antrim says the transport numbers have increased by 11 percent in the past 11 weeks.  In response to that, they’ve added an additional ambulance to respond to calls on specific days: Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursdays.

Only one call was impacted by Wednesday’s blackout.

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