Westland residents concerned about 911 response times

One woman believes staffing is the issue
Posted at 11:28 PM, May 27, 2019
and last updated 2019-05-27 23:28:58-04

WESTLAND, Mich. (WXYZ) — A few Westland residents are upset over the time it took for an ambulance to show up for a medical emergency.

Linda Mills, 73, fell ill on her front porch and her neighbor said she found her unconscious.

"It was a good chance I could of had a heart attack," Mills said.

She is waiting for a diagnosis after staying three days in the hospital. A neighbor, who wanted to remain anonymous, said she found Mills and called 911.

Mills said, after about 20 minutes her husband drove her to the hospital. She believes the city has a staffing issue.

"Westland needs more help," Mills said. "We need more rescue squads."

Westland Fire Chief Michael Stradtner said the 911 call came in at 5:07 p.m. and first responders were cleared prior to arrival at 5:19 p.m. because Mills was transported by a private vehicle.

Stradtner released the below statement:

On 5/23/19 our rescue responded to a call for medical services for a possible unconscious, breathing patient.

The call was received to our dispatch center at 5:07 pm and rescue 3 was dispatched to the location. At 5:19 pm rescue 3 was cleared from the incident prior to arrival on scene. It was reported to rescue 3 that the patient was transported via private vehicle. The rescue never arrived on scene and cleared.

A total of 12 minutes elapsed between the call for service and our unit being cleared. The closest station to the incident was station 4 and that station was on another incident.

It is not uncommon for one station to be tied up on an incident and another has to respond. Given that the next closest station available was located in the southeast portion of the city and traffic times are as such at 5:00 pm the perceived delay was not a staffing issue as suggested."

Meantime, Mills fears if she will need help quicker in the future.

"I do have a lot of medical problems, it could of been a stroke it could have been a heart attack

The fire chief said his department responds to about 330 calls a year in other cities through their mutual aid agreement.

The unit that would normally be first to respond to Mills' home was on a rescue call in Wayne.