City of Arab gets new ambulance service with faster response times

The former provider, Samaritan EMS, told the city it'd stop services last month, so the city started working with Marshall Medical Center.

Posted: Jul 2, 2019 6:19 PM
Updated: Jul 2, 2019 7:09 PM

The City of Arab has a new ambulance service and it's hoping this reduces response times.

After the previous provider, Samaritan EMS, told the city it'd be stopping services this month, officials started working on an agreement with Marshall Medical Center.

WAAY 31 spoke with the new provider about what people can expect.

We were told there has been no disruption in services since Samaritan EMS stopped and Marshall Medical Services started. The Arab fire chief said one thing that'll change is faster response times.

"The only thing Arab is ever going to notice is the different color uniform and a different color truck," said Darrel House with Marshall Medical Services.

Darrel House has worked as a medic for Marshall County for ten years. He worked with the previous ambulance provider and now works with Marshall Medical Services.

"Transition's just been as smooth as you can possibly imagine. We haven't missed any calls," said House.

House said Samaritan EMS was Arab's ambulance provider for about six years. City officials told WAAY 31 back in June, the owner told them they'd stop services on July 1st.

House says he's happy he can still serve his community as a familiar face along with some of his same crew members.

"You know where to go and you don't have to sit and look for addresses," he said.

The Fire Department and the city told WAAY 31 the same services will be provided, but people will notice response times might get a bit faster. This is because Marshall Health Systems has more ambulances ready to go throughout the county.

"Health Systems is a larger service. They've got a lot more employees and a lot more resources than Samaritan had," said Fire Chief Ricky Phillips with the Arab Fire Department.

At the end of the day, first responders told WAAY 31 their mission will not change.

"We're here to help people and we're going to try to make a difference in what we can," said House.

Fire Chief Ricky Phillips said he wants to let people know they can voice their concerns to him or the mayor, and they'll be sure to address any concerns immediately.

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