Big Storms Help Make Barnegat's First Aid Squad Busier Than Ever
First Aid Squad 11 answers record breaking number of calls within the past 6 months, and expects more
Barnegat's First Aid Squad 11 is busier than ever.
The squad has made a record number of emergency house calls this year and last. With a total of 1,300 calls last year, the squad plans to exceed or have more calls this year.
The squad has assisted in storm coverage, including Atlantic County's most recent storm evacuation, helping to bring residents to air conditioned facilities.
The 40 volunteers that make up the First Aid Squad hope to gain 20 more members before the end of the year, in order to cover all the emergencies they foresee, said the squad's president, James Goldstein.
From January 1, 2012 to June 1, 2012 the squad answered 568 emergency calls.
The squad looks for locals to give their time or even a donation, and anything helps, Goldstein said.
Volunteers work a varied number of hours, some hitting a total of 100 hours a month. Goldstein says “most of our volunteers work about 24 hours a month, but any help is great.”
New volunteers are trained and given uniforms to wear on the job. After 6 months with the squad, volunteers can also go to be certified as an EMT.
Goldstein says that volunteers also have to be prepared to answer calls ranging from a fallen victim to a stroke victim, and the squad wants to make sure that the volunteers are prepared.
The average population in Barnegat is getting older, which also brings about more emergency calls, and more work for the First Aid Squad, Goldstein says.
Goldstein says that, as the population grows older, there is more need for the squad to help out around town. Many people need the squad for fall victims or medical emergencies, totaling almost 30 calls this month.
Storms in Barnegat have made emergency personnel busy, too. In June, a sudden storm that started in southern Ocean County cut power in parts of Barnegat and Manahawkin, officials say.
Trees were down, homes were struck by lightning and some flooding was reported as emergency crews scrambled to the storm-affected scenes.
For more information about volunteering please call (609)698-7868 or visit www.squad11.org.