Pa. EMS crews lend a hand in New Jersey

    Pennsylvania sent 125 emergency medical services workers to New Jersey to help with building evacuation and hospital care after Hurricane Irene.

    Joe Schmider, who runs the state’s Emergency Medical Services, said from the time Pennsylvania got the request from New Jersey to have back-up EMS teams at the ready, it took about an hour and a half for ambulances to hit the road.

    “And it’s done very quickly,” he said. “It can be as much as just a verbal, OK, we’re on the same page, and you just go, so you can move the resources fast, and then you make the numbers work, you know you work on the numbers after the event, a little more detailed.

    All the states are part of a federal agreement–the Emergency Management Assistance Compact.

    Its administrators work with state emergency officials to figure out the logistics and the costs of loaning out Pennsylvania emergency personnel.

    Schmider said Pennsylvania’s EMS teams could stay in New Jersey until Wednesday.

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