First Response now looking to expand into Lawrence County

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MOULTON, Ala. (WHNT) - Decatur's First Response Ambulance Service wants to expand into neighboring Lawrence County. At Tuesday night's county commission meeting, the company explained how it might improve ambulance services there.

A spokesperson for First Response Ambulance told Lawrence County commissioners it would improve emergency medical services in Lawrence County, if it's allowed to operate there.

"We just finished an EMT class at First Response Ambulance Service and some of the students in my class are from Lawrence County. And they asked us to come over and see what we could do to help them out with their service here," says Richard Wilkinson of First Response.

Wilkinson says with more than 120 employees in the Decatur area, they would draw upon those resources to rotate ambulances in and out of Lawrence County as needed. He says they would maintain a vehicle in Moulton and another in the Town Creek area at all times. Lawrence County is currently served by Gregs Ambulance Service, which is based in Moulton. One Lawrence County firefighter told us the county needs faster EMS service.

"The local service does have a satellite branch in Courtland which is 10 miles from our area. But the problem we're having is if we have more than one incident that requires an ambulance, then they have to leave and it leaves our area unprotected," says Red Bank Fire Chief Charles Krugh.

Krugh says there have been several recent incidents where patients had to wait 30 minutes or longer for an ambulance. He says getting faster EMS service in the county is a matter of life or death.

Meanwhile, First Response Ambulance Service will take its request before Lawrence County's 9-1-1 Board on August 29th. We were unable to contact the owner of Greg's Ambulance Service for comment on this story.