Emergency Responders Take Extra Precautions in Winter Weather Conditions


“Attention Station 1, Attention Station 1-74 year-old man was shoveling snow, got lightheaded, was having chest pains for about 15 minutes,” the dispatch center reports. 

When such a call comes in, emergency responders have to be ready to go.

“Dispatch, show rescue two responding,” says Williston Fire Department Battalion Chief, Michael Fronimos.

But in unpredictable winter weather conditions, they also have to move cautiously.

“When you throw in the adverse weather conditions, it just makes it more dangerous than what we normally have to face,” says Fronimos. 

And in addition to navigating dangerous travel conditions to get to the scene, there are several challenges responders face upon arrival-like snow covering fire hydrants or icy roads making it difficult to transport patients.

“These are things that we ask people to take into consideration. That if you see us on scene, hey, maybe you can lend a hand with a shovel to get us to the patient a little quicker,” says Fronimos. 

And thinking the responders might need a hand Cody Grabow pitched right in, helping shovel snow and clearing a path for the patient to be loaded into the ambulance.

“It’s a snowy day out here. It’s just part of being neighborly,” says Grabow. 

Icy roads and winter weather conditions can slow response times. But clearing sidewalks, hydrants, and driveways, in addition to being neighborly, can also help responders work more efficiently when the call comes in,

The Williston Fire Department responded to a total of 18 calls between the time the storm began on Sunday and this afternoon. 14 of those calls were EMS related. 

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