In any emergency, seconds can matter. Mere seconds can make the difference between life and death. That is one of the main reasons, most people base their opinion of their fire department, police station, and ambulance services on how long it takes for them to arrive after the call goes out for help. If your house is on fire, you would not want to wait an hour for the fire department and the same can be said if you were being robbed or in serious pain. However, there are a lot of things that can influence how quickly the emergency services arrive in your area, and many people do not consider this aspect of it.
How Life Threatening is Your Emergency?
If you have a brush fire that is not endangering homes, a medical emergency that is not life threatening, or something similar, the emergency services in your area may respond slower than they would if someone was in danger. The emergency services team has a legal right to speed during emergencies where their response time truly matters. However, they may not fly 90 mph through the city if the situation does not deem it necessary for them to do so.
How Close Is The Fire House, Police Department, or EMT Service?
A lot of emergency services, lack the funds to have local places for emergency services set up, especially in rural areas. If your nearest fire department is 30 minutes away, you should expect it to take them about 30 minutes to arrive at your home, regardless of what the emergency is. If it is a true life or death issue, they can get there faster, but you do have to accept that there may still be some time from when the call comes in, they get into motion, and arrive at their destination.
In a larger city, there is often more funding because there are more people to protect as well as emergency service stations close by. The speed with which they may arrive will automatically be faster if you have an emergency service closer to you.
Fire House Volunteers
If you live in an area where the fire station is run purely by volunteers, you may have a fire house nearby, but that does not mean there is a team of firemen waiting for your call. In some rural communities the fire house is a place to hold the fire trucks, but all of the firemen are volunteers. This means they must get the call, get to the firehouse, get suited up, jump in the truck, and head for your emergency situation. You could have a fire department within 5 minutes of your home, but if the firefighters are not always on duty there, you may not receive a 5 minute response time.
Increasing Response Times
If you are unsatisfied with your local emergency squad’s response time, you must work to discover why they are slow. Instead of placing blame on the department, discover what makes them slower to respond. Often you will discover that it is due to very little manpower because of a lack of funding. This does not make it better, but at least you know that it is not simply lazy emergency squad teams.