With Family No. 500 getting ready to move to Babcock Ranch in Charlotte County, a focus on safety is key. But the closest fire station is outside the community at Station 9 along State Road 31, so county officials are looking to boost services for community members.
To enhance safety, Charlotte County commissioners recently approved hiring four new firefighters, also trained as paramedics or EMTs, with two working out of the heart of Babcock Ranch on a daily basis.
“What the rescue is going to bring to that is the transport capability in addition to paramedics and EMTs that facilitate advanced life support care,” said Deputy Chief Jason Fair of Charlotte County Fire & EMS
Ashley Calderon in Fort Myers hopes to be a future resident at Babcock Ranch. On top of already seeing the community as a future home for her family, she is happy to see the addition of emergency services.
“As a mother of three, one which being a boy who is always accident prone, I think that it’s great because the response time again would be quicker,” Calderon said. “And in the event of an emergency, I think that would make a lot of sense to have one in here.”
Now, it’s up to commissioners to approve the construction of a trailer in the community to house ambulance crew members. So, during an emergency, the crews at Station 9 and the new Babcock trailer will respond simultaneously.
Charlotte County Fire & EMS hopes to have the new trailer in place and new firefighters trained by January 2020. Babcock Ranch is also expected to spend $300,000 on a new ambulance to respond to calls in the area.
“We want to make sure we get our resource to the incident as quickly as possible,” Fair said. “It would make sense for the people living here.”