Los Fresnos News

Los Fresnos EMS & Fire Station

Receives New Equipment Allowing The Department to Do More for Los Fresnos & the Cameron County Region

Some of the new equipment on the newest fire truck. Photo by Emilio Flores, LFN

Los Fresnos EMS and Fire Station is growing to be more able to help in bigger and better ways! Last week Los Fresnos News was privileged to sit down with the Fire Chief, Gene Daniels, and discuss some of the new equipment they’ve added to the Los Fresnos EMS & Fire Station.

On the emergency medical services side, they’ve just got rollin’ their newest member to the fleet. It’s a multi-patient vehicle, able to carry five patients laying down, or up to nine patients sitting upright. This new vehicle has added new capabilities to the Los Fresnos EMS Medics on call.

Chief Daniels explains that it will be of great use to Los Fresnos, “What it does, is it frees up ambulance so were not taking all the ambulances. All the resources aren’t being used on one event.” He says that the ambulance was just approved to be in service, “We just got the notification that everything was completed and we could put the unit in service.” He also says, “With covid and the way it is, we’re talking about using it as hospitals because there’s a big delay in hospitals right now.”

“It’s licensed as a specialty vehicle, so it’s not something we’re gonna run every day for calls, it’s for specific events.” He further explains that this is beneficial for all the surrounding areas. Mass casualty incidents.

Chief, Gene Daniels gives LFN an Inside look at the Los Fresnos EMS’s new multi-patient vehicle. Photo by Emilio Flores, LFN

“Since we’re regionally located in Cameron County, we can go in any direction really quick with the crew we have.” He says “And it can be rapidly deployed.”

Chief Daniels says that especially with spring break coming up it makes Los Fresnos more able to serve however we need.

This is big news, and some great thought went behind getting this Multi-Patient Vehicle. Chief Daniels says that they designed themselves with the help of the manufacturer that built the “Amb-bus”.

When asking what made the EMS Team come up with this idea Chief Daniels explained that just about every region of the state of Texas has what you call an “Amb-bus” as I just mentioned. So what is the amb-bus? Exactly what it sounds like. It is a large bus-like ambulance. These amb-buses are able to around carry eighteen patients! He says “But to deploy that, you’ve gotta have, you know, several medics on board,” He says that it really didn’t make sense for the area. It’s harder to staff and get it deployed when you need it. So they sat down and designed their own hybrid if you will, that better fit the needs of the area!

Now let’s talk about the New Fire Engine that came into service back in October, with all the brand new bells & whistles! Chief Daniel says, “It’s a House fire truck, but we can use it for motor vehicle accidents,” He says “It’s fully equipped! …Got all the rescue equipment on it, everything we need for house fires”

Some of the items include: Battery-powered rescue tools, Jaws, Cutters, spreaders, and with the technology now, they have battery-powered exhaust tools to help get some of the smoke out of an area, battery-powered chainsaws, circular saws, intercom headsets, allowing them to communicate with each other more easily, and seats 4 firefighters with plenty of room to put on any of their gear.

Chief Gene Daniels says he takes his job seriously. Being volunteers makes no difference according to Daniels. He believes they could be ranked with some of the best firefighters in the state. Accountability & readiness, Chief Daniels shared that last year the fire department went through an ISO audit, basically, the audit is to rate your area for insurance ratings. They are rated on a scale of one to ten, with one being the best, and ten being the worst.

Chief Daniels explains that the last audit was in 2009, and had a ranking of a 6Y, which is okay, but says that recently the department has received their updated rating of a 4 or 4Y. This is not only great for the department, but for the surrounding area!

“…we improved our insurance rating. What that does is it lowers everyone’s insurance in our area.”
“We went from a 6Y to a 4Y which is really good on Insurance ratings, it saves everyone money in their insurance… Everybody in our fire district, in the city, and in the County.”

It’s very difficult for a volunteer fire department to get that low of a score, but Chief Daniels attributes that to the amazing volunteers he has and the updated equipment they’ve added.