Council: Ambulance response times improve in the Abingtons

June 18th, 2015 10:28 am

First Posted: 3/21/2015

CLARKS GREEN — Tim Rowland of Commonwealth Health addressed the Clarks Green council March 18 at the regular council meeting to explain recent changes in ambulance service from Commonwealth Health, and how this affects the borough.

“We always maintain a paramedic truck in the Abington area. That never changed,” Rowland said in response to comments at last month’s council meeting that since Commonwealth Health (previously Community Life Support ambulance dispatch) moved from their location on the Morgan Highway to Keyser Avenue, ambulance response times to the borough may be affected.

Rowland said an EMS vehicle is always parked providing coverage to the Abington area, and that since the move last year, Commonwealth Health has responded to over 450 calls in the Abingtons.

“There’s also another vehicle competing for the same call line so actually for the case of Clarks Green, and all the Abingtons, the service is better because of the competition.”

Rowland also said the ambulances are dispatched from 911 by global positioning satellites. “When you call 911, you are always getting the closest paramedics.”

In other news, council member Maureen Palmer filed a complaint regarding property on East Grove Street for not following the snow removal ordinance to keep the sidewalks clear.

“It’s very dangerous,” she told council, and noted that nothing has happened since she filed the complaint at the beginning of February, and snow was plowed onto the sidewalk so it was not passable. Palmer showed council photos of the snow blocking the sidewalks.

Council President David Rinaldi asked whether the property still appeared blocked with snow. Palmer responded there is still a stretch of ice on the sidewalk and with a warm day it may be gone, but that, “the point is, I was censured for saying the property wasn’t taken care of, and this is proof that property wasn’t taken care of and what you did was absurd.”

“No, you were censured for saying you were a councilwoman and you were going to use your influence. That is what was alleged,” said Rinaldi.

“Exactly, alleged,” Palmer said.

Mayor William Thorburn asked if the storage container was still at the property on East Grove Street Palmer submitted the complaint about. Palmer said the storage container had since been removed. Thornburn suggested council discuss the issue of storage containers in the borough at the next work session.

“We should really think about making an ordinance to give them a time limit,” and referenced a storage container located on Clark Street all winter. “It’s unsightly and they shouldn’t be there,” Thornburn said.

Barry Phillips of the Building and Grounds Committee told council he will follow up with the zoning officer to find out if there was any response to Palmer’s complaint regarding the East Grove Street property.

Council also voted unanimously to adapt the Clarks Green Guidelines for Ethical Performances, initiated by council member Keith Williams and the Personnel Committee.