Bedford County uses citizen's academy to recruit volunteer EMT's - WSLS 10 NBC in Roanoke/Lynchburg Va

Bedford County uses citizen's academy to recruit volunteer EMT's

Posted: Updated:

When it is an emergency involving your loved one, seconds matter in getting these folks on the road. A priority and concern for Bedford County fire and rescue chief deputy Janet Blankenship, as calls go up by the thousands each year.

"Less staff and an increase in call volume it is a concern for the citizens, and we what to make sure someone is getting there in an efficient manner," says Blakenship.

In 2009 more than 750 volunteers made up the ems division. The number dropped to about 600 in 2012.  

Throughout the year, Bedford County hosts classes for their citizens academy to teach people things like CPR. Blakenship hopes to use the class for a different reason; recruit EMT's. Krisha Dunford already has medical training and was one of 28 people signed up for the class.

"I didn't know Bedford County was doing anything, and the closest one I found was in Montgomery county and  they fill up quickly. This is the first one I found and got in," says Dunford.

Like any class they are put to the test. Some may walk away having learned something new, others may walk back through the doors. Dunford plans to become a volunteer EMT.

"Give back to a community that has given so much to me it means a lot to me," says Dunford.

With one more class, Blakenship hopes to see these people again. 

"I would take all I could get. I would love 100, but if we could get 20 or 30 that is a great increase," says Blankenship.

And put an end to a trend of a shrinking EMS division

  • Most Popular StoriesMost Popular StoriesMore>>

  • April Mugshots

    April Mugshots

    Tuesday, April 22 2014 2:42 PM EDT2014-04-22 18:42:32 GMT
    Thomas Allen WinstonThomas Allen Winston
    The following are mugshots and charges of individuals arrested between April 1-4 by the Sullivan County Sheriff's Office.
    The following are mugshots and charges of individuals arrested between April 1-4 by the Sullivan County Sheriff's Office.
  • March Mugshots

    March Mugshots

    Monday, April 7 2014 12:49 PM EDT2014-04-07 16:49:38 GMT
    Michelle Marie Bussiere was arrested last week and charged with identity theft, forgery, theft under $500, among other charges.  (Source: Sullivan County Sheriff's Office)Michelle Marie Bussiere was arrested last week and charged with identity theft, forgery, theft under $500, among other charges. (Source: Sullivan County Sheriff's Office)
    This photo gallery features mugshots of individuals arrested in northeast Tennessee and southwest Virginia. 
    This photo gallery features mugshots of individuals arrested in northeast Tennessee and southwest Virginia. 
  • Pineda says he'll learn from ejection for pine tar

    Pineda says he'll learn from ejection for pine tar

    Thursday, April 24 2014 3:45 AM EDT2014-04-24 07:45:37 GMT
    The pine tar glistened on Michael Pineda's neck, improving his grip and inviting trouble.
    The pine tar glistened on Michael Pineda's neck, improving his grip and inviting trouble.
  • Fire at saw mill in Bedford County is under investigation

    Fire at saw mill in Bedford County is under investigation

    Thursday, April 24 2014 10:38 AM EDT2014-04-24 14:38:21 GMT
    Bedford County's Fire Chief says there were no injuries, but the owner estimates the damages at about $75,000.
    Bedford County's Fire Chief says there were no injuries, but the owner estimates the damages at about $75,000.
  • Red Cross assisting after Carroll Co. fire

    Red Cross assisting after Carroll Co. fire

    Red Cross assisting after Carroll Co. fire

    Thursday, April 24 2014 7:21 AM EDT2014-04-24 11:21:18 GMT
    One person is displaced after a fire in Carroll County. It happened Wednesday night around 7:00 p.m. on Gardner Mill Road in Hillsville. The Red Cross is now providing assistance and will continue to coordinate recovery efforts.
    One person is displaced after a fire in Carroll County. It happened Wednesday night around 7:00 p.m. on Gardner Mill Road in Hillsville. The Red Cross is now providing assistance and will continue to coordinate recovery efforts.
  • 29 Virginia High Schools on Personal Finance Top-100 List

    29 Virginia High Schools on Personal Finance Top-100 List

    Tuesday, April 22 2014 9:32 PM EDT2014-04-23 01:32:06 GMT
    29 schools in the Commonwealth, including many in our area, ranked the the nation's top 100 best high schools for personal finance instruction.
    29 schools in the Commonwealth, including many in our area, ranked the the nation's top 100 best high schools for personal finance instruction.
Powered by WorldNow

WSLS 10, P.O. Box 10
Roanoke, VA 24022-0010

Telephone: 540.981.9110
Fax: 540.343.3157
Email: news@wsls.com

Can't find something?
Powered by WorldNow
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Media General Communications Holdings, LLC. A Media General Company.