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Marion Fire-EMS breaks call record

Marion Fire-EMS breaks call record

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Marion Fire-EMS

With two recent business fires in the downtown district, the work and importance of Marion Fire-EMS has been on public display, but those headline-making calls don’t begin to tell the story of the first-responders’ work. On a recent weekday, the agency responded to 24 calls in 24 hours.

That day was Monday, Sept. 27. Speaking to the Marion Town Council during its early-October meeting, Chief Richard Keesling said his department was able to cover every call, but, at one point, had three ambulances and two fire vehicles in operation simultaneously.

Keesling reported that the department’s calls are continuing to increase regularly.

In September, the chief presented the council with a report that looked at the upward trek in calls.

The department began collecting data and analyzing its calls in July 2015 and have logged the details about 11,648 calls.

Through August of this year, Marion Fire EMS has experienced a 10.2% increase over last year and a 6.2% over 2019.

In August 2015, the agency answered 148 calls. By this past August, the number climbed to 241.

In September, the department responded to 280 calls.

Keesling said his agency had recently been hit hard by COVID-19 related calls, but, in early October those calls were beginning to level off.

Prior to Sept. 27, the highest number of calls in a single day was 14.

As leaders of the county and its three towns continue to debate the way forward for EMS services, these statistics illustrate the importance of their endeavors.

Mayor David Helms called the Marion departments’ staff work amazing.

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