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Glade Spring Life Saving Crew no longer responding to calls

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UPDATE, 5:35 p.m.

Late Wednesday, officials with Washington County, Virginia issued a statement to formally announce the call for bids from qualified businesses that can provide 24/7 Advanced and Basic Life Support services for the Glade Spring area.

The official bid request can be viewed by clicking here.

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The Glade Spring Volunteer Life Saving Crew is no longer responding to emergency calls.

Emergency Management Coordinator, Tim Estes presented a document to the Washington County Board of Supervisors Tuesday night.

The board voted to revoke the service area for the crew.

"There was some things that were brought to our attention and we began to look at call data and this decision was made strictly on their ability to respond for advanced life support," Etses said.

Estes said in 2008, the life saving crew had a change in license from basic to advanced life support, or ALS.

"Place them on a cardiac monitor, give them pain medications, give them medication for a heart attack," he said.

According to documents given to us by Estes, the life saving crew has failed to provide ALS in its service area.

Between January 2017 and September 2017, the crew responded to about 5% of ALS calls.

"They did respond to 97% of the calls they were requested to respond to. They had been answering the calls, they just weren't delivering the service at advanced life support," Estes said.

Between May and August, other agencies like the the Washington County Life Saving Crew responded 111 times to Glade Spring ALS calls.

Estes said Glade Spring Life Saving Crew was unable to provide ALS care because they did not have the proper equipment or trained personnel.

When asked why the crew didn't have trained people or proper equipment, Estes said he can't discuss the matter.

For now, three other rescue squads will respond to calls in Glade Spring.

Valley rescue squad will cover the north area. Damascus will cover the south and Washington County Life Saving Crew will cover the middle.

"It's taking those agencies away from where they're usually servicing and I think that's going to put a strain on them as well," Washington County resident Santha Counts said.

Residents we talked to said they're worried about not getting help during emergencies.

But Estes said the response time will not change significantly. These three squads were already responding there for ALS calls.

"If they call 911 for an emergency, they're going to have someone respond to them," he said.

We also reached out to the Glade Spring Life Saving Crew and the three agencies having to serve that area now. None wanted to comment.

Estes said the county is willing to work with the Glade Spring Life Saving Crew to let them come back as an ALS provider.

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