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Hampton officials pleased with new EMS service

| Tuesday, March 6, 2018, 2:18 p.m.
Hampton officials pleased with response times by Shaler Hampton Emergency Medical Services.
Hampton officials pleased with response times by Shaler Hampton Emergency Medical Services.

Hampton Council was given an update on a variety of township issues at its recent Feb. 28 meeting, including on the status of its new partnership with the Shaler-Hampton Emergency Medical Services.

The Shaler-Hampton EMS received 127 calls to 911 for service in January, and of those calls they answered 118, according to Joe Johnson, manager of the EMS.

For those calls not answered, it was because all three of the ambulances were already out on a call, said Johnson.

Christopher Lochner, municipal manager for the township, said it comes to 7 percent of missed calls. He compared it to the missed calls by the former Hampton EMS, which was Hampton's preferred provider last year, which would occasionally average around 28 percent missed in a month.

The new EMS has a full-time Advanced Life Support ambulance located in Hampton Township, and two ambulances at their Shaler location. The service is also the preferred provider for Etna.

The service averaged a response time of 9.4 minutes in January, said Johnson. This is measured from when a dispatch call is received to the time the service arrives at the site of the emergency, he said.

Additionally, Lochner said the Shaler-Hampton EMS were aware the calls not abled to be answered were being covered by mutual aid. So far, officials are pleased with the new partnership.

“Hopefully, that will continue for multiple years to come,” said Lochner.

Alex Zarenko, director of community services for Hampton Township, said they met with the EMS regarding early planning for Hampton's July 3 festivities and he was very pleased.

“I'm going to feel real good about this year,” he said.

• In other council news, Jerry Speakman, controller to the township, advised the council that the township had already used much of this year's salt supply. Last year, there was a surplus due to milder weather in 2017.

This year “we're going to be much more in line with budget” as far as purchasing goes.

“That's OK. We had a nice little break last year. That's not going to happen this year,” he said.

Zarenko said there is enough in reserve for any more snow that might come this year.

Like many other municipalities, Hampton is in a joint purchasing program for salt with 18 other members of the North Hills Council of Governments, according to the NHCOG website. The local governments share in the cost and supply of the multi-municipal road salt contract.

Hampton also has a cooperative purchasing agreement with Pennsylvania's COSTARS program, said Lochner.

Both of these agreements require a municipality to purchase a minimum of 80 percent of what township projected for that year.

Lochner said the township passed its minimum for this year.

Last year, the township also saved money because the COSTARS agreement let it out of its 80 percent minimum purchasing requirement, saving $113,000, he said.

Additionally, the agreements lets a municipality purchase up to 120 percent of what it projected, if necessary.

• Lochner discussed the upcoming clean-up day on March 24, 8 a.m. to noon, weather permitting. Volunteers are welcome to join staff collecting garbage along roads in Hampton.

Roads will be assigned to individuals or groups, and vests, gloves and bags will be provided. For details, go to the township website at:

Natalie Beneviat is a Tribune-Review contributor.

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