ROSS COUNTY – Twin Township has dissolved its EMS service after citing too long of wait times to respond.
The Fire Department said that they plan to enter into an EMS contact with three surrounding townships to provide service to Twin Residences.
In a public report, the fire department said that last year the department only responded to 5 to 6% percent of their runs and 0% percent of mutual aid runs. They said this was completely unacceptable. One of the biggest factors in this decision is how the system would call out an emergency call several times before calling for mutual aid.
“Currently, the responsibility of calling out squads is the Ross County Sheriff’s Office. A 911 call is received by a dispatcher and the tone is dropped for the Township responsible. If no one answers the tone in 5 minutes, then the tone is dropped again for the same township. Only after this has been done and 10 to 15 crucial minutes have passed, then Mutual Aid is called. 15 minutes is too long to wait before a dispatch is possibly accomplished. The Board attempted to have the time reduced to 2 minutes then Mutual Aid would be called. The Sheriff’s office would not change the protocol even though the office is fully aware that our EMS has not been responding.”
Twin Township is a voluntary fire and EMS department and only has eight members who have full-time jobs and families.
To fix this issue the Board attempted a 3 mill levy in the primary election in May 2022. This levy would have provided funds for EMS to have personnel on station for approximately 50% of the time. It is estimated that it would require an 8 mill levy to have a full-time EMS Department for Twin Township. They currently manage the entire volunteer Fire/EMS department with a 2 mill levy.
“This millage is not sufficient to pay for the runs by other Townships. Twin
Township will average approximately 360 runs per year. Currently, we are paying for these runs with American Rescue Plan funds. These funds are limited and will be completely exhausted by the end of this year. The calculations of cost versus revenue indicate that a 1 to 1.5 mill levy will have to be passed to allow payment for the services by other Townships going forward.”
The Twin Fire Department will continue to operate.
Ross County is currently in work on a possible county-wide EMS Service that may solve these issues.