DETROIT (AP) _ Officials say efforts to train Detroit firefighters as medical first responders are behind schedule.
The Detroit News reports (http://bit.ly/1M9kkrt ) that one year into a contract that requires Detroit’s 838 firefighters to become first responders, eight of the force’s 47 companies are now handling basic first-aid duties.
Last year, Executive Fire Commissioner Edsel Jenkins said he wanted all trained by now in an effort to cut emergency response times. Jenkins says it’s a “big culture change” for the fire department.
Officials say they expect all will be trained by the end of the year. Other major cities offer similar training for firefighters.
Early last year, Detroit’s emergency medical services response times averaged 19 minutes. Last week, the newspaper says it was 9 minutes and 58 seconds. The goal is 8 minutes.