Muscatine Fire Department to Purchase New Ambulance
by Margaret Hurlbert
December 20, 2019

At the December 5th Muscatine City Council meeting, the Council approved the Muscatine Fire Department’s (MFD’s) request to purchase a new type II ambulance. This new vehicle will give them more versatility in transporting patients in varying situations.

According to Ted Hillard, Battalion and EMS Chief for the MFD, the department began looking into purchasing a type II ambulance in October of this year. Hillard explained that a Type II ambulance (which looks sleeker and more van like than a traditional ambulance) provides a better way to transport patients from one hospital to another. “The type II ambulance benefits include a smoother ride for long transport distances with injured patients, as well as a more economical perchance [with] a more efficient fuel mileage and lower maintenance costs compared to the larger, modular type III ambulances.” As a smaller, lighter weight ambulance, type II ambulances typically have a gentler, car-like ride, and get more miles to the gallon, making them a wise choice for longer trips.

As a routine part of their job, the MFD takes patients requiring advanced or specialized treatment needs to other hospitals across the region, including UnityPoint in Bettendorf, Davenport, and Rock Island, and Mercy and the University of Iowa Hospital and Clinics in Iowa City. “The main use of the [MFD] type II ambulance will be used for inter facility transports from Trinity Muscatine Hospital to other hospitals outside of our community that offer specialized services that are unavailable at Trinity Muscatine. These patients need to be transported by ambulance due to [their] inability to ride in any other conventional vehicles or needing specialized care during transport.”

By getting the go ahead to purchase their first type II ambulance, Hillard believes the MFD has taken a great step towards modernizing their fleet and providing better service to the citizens of Muscatine. “I feel that the type II ambulance will be [the] way of the future by providing a safe and economical transport method for non-critical patients to specialized care hospitals.”

The MFD accepted a bid to purchase a 2019 Medix SRH148AL2019 type II ambulance on a Ford transit chassis from Foster Coach Sales Inc. They expect the new ambulance to arrive and go into service in the Spring of 2020. Their MPD’s type II ambulance will join their fleet of five type three ambulances, which they currently operate out of both their fire stations.

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