EMS Personnel Test Their Driving Skills
By RFD Watchdesk
October 10, 2021

Sunday morning EMS personnel, apparatus, and lots of traffic cones descended on Spring-Ford Area High School for a unique opportunity to hone driving skills. A group of providers started the morning with an overview of vehicle dynamics, features, and limitations before being able to put those fundamentals to the test. Combining a traditional Emergency Vehicle Operations Course (EVOC) with elements of a Police Defensive Driving Course our providers were given the opportunity to push the limits of EMS vehicles in a safe, coachable environment.

EMS and emergency services as a whole has seen a sharp decline in responders due to a number of factors. This is not a problem unique to southeast Pennsylvania but the entire state and country. As a result the requirements of the past for driving experience have been relaxed out of necessity. Each of our drivers are certified as EMSVO (Emergency Medical Services Vehicle Operators) and meet the requirements to drive all EMS vehicles but may have limited experience behind the driver's seat. RFD recognized this as a shortcoming and developed this driving course to allow those providers an opportunity to learn, ask questions, and then apply their newly acquired knowledge to the pavement.

This day would not have been possible without the assistance from Spring-Ford Area School District for the use of their property providing a safe location, Spring-Ford School Police Chief Dave Boyer for applying his expertise in Defensive Driving techniques to the course, and Norco Fire Company Deputy Chief Chuck Hipple for his years of experience driving emergency vehicles and providing all the traffic obstacles bringing North Coventry Township's Traffic Management trailer for the session.