How Adapting Vehicles To The Emergency Lowers Response Times And Saves Lives

Earlier this month on a Tuesday afternoon, United Hatzalah volunteer EMT Daniel Bakovza, received an emergency alert to a medical emergency that had taken place nearby.

United Hatzalah ATV on the Ashdod beach (photo credit: Shlomy Gabay)

A man was swimming in the ocean near the beach in Ashdod when he drowned due to unknown causes. Seeing him struggling, the man’s friends rushed over and pulled him from the water. When they arrived at the beach they immediately called for help. Unfortunately, none of them knew how to perform CPR.

The Ashdod beaches are notorious for their large sand dunes that surround the beach thus making reaching the victim impossible for an ambulance, car, or even motorcycle. Knowing the difficult terrain of the area, Daniel jumped into his EMS ATV and raced over the dunes quickly. Upon arrival, he immediately began CPR. The CPR was successful and the man’s life was saved.

Later that evening, after returning home from the beach, Daniel received another alert from his communications device. A young girl was with her family at a nature park, enjoying the last vestiges of summer vacation before having to return to school. The nature park offered a relaxed atmosphere, and as it was outdoors, the COVID-19 restrictions were greatly reduced.

As the girl was playing at the park, she felt a sharp pain and looked down to find that she had been stung by a scorpion. Her parents quickly called United Hatzalah’s Dispatch and Command Center for help.

Once again, Daniel rushed to the scene on his ATV with the powerful headlights and special searchlight illuminating the darkened park. Daniel knew that some species of scorpions have venomous stings that can be lethal to children and thus every second was critical.

Daniel arrived at the scene and found the 9-year-old girl with her parents in a state of panic. Daniel knew that by calming the girl he could help lower her racing heartbeat and slow the spread of any potential venom. The EMT calmed the patient and her worried family, immobilized the girl’s foot, and then secured her in his ATV. He then made the return drive over the rocks and rough terrain while keeping an eye on his patient to make sure that she remained conscious. More than a mile later, they finally made it out of the park and to the main road, where an intensive care ambulance was waiting to transport the child to the hospital.

When it comes to a medical emergency, acting quickly is a major component in saving a life. Utilizing the correct vehicle to respond faster to medical emergencies can be instrumental in saving a life. Had either of these patients had to wait for an ambulance to arrive at their location on foot before receiving treatment, they may not have survived. Daniel’s use of a specially equipped emergency response ATV to reach those in need of medical assistance that ambulances cannot reach enabled him to save two lives in one day.

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