MILWAUKEE - While clearing several inches of heavy, wet snow may have been troublesome for you, for paramedics, it can mean slower response times, but you can make their job a little easier.
"I haven’t seen something this bad in two years," said Larry Minor, Divine Snow Removal employee Sunday, Jan. 31, after a snowstorm brought more than four inches of snow to most of southeast Wisconsin, with some areas seeing over 10 inches.
The Milwaukee Department of Public Works declared a snow emergency, with the snow creating an emergency for emergency vehicles.
"We’ve had a lot of ambulances getting stuck in the snow," said Noelle Gross, Bell Ambulance supervisor.
Bell Ambulance paramedics started their shifts Sunday plowing and shoveling so they could get the vehicles out of the garage.
"Snowplowing is a huge factor in our response time, so when there’s a lot of snow out on the roads, it takes us a lot longer for us to get to where we need to go," said Gross. "It’s a huge setback for us."
Getting into the homes of patients can be a setback too if there is not a clear path for paramedics to walk, but there is a way you can help.
"Stay home if you can. If you do need to call us, if there’s a family at home that can possibly help shovel, that’ll help us get that care to the patient a lot quicker," Gross said.
Paramedics say the best way to help them during tough conditions is to be smart and be aware of them while on the road.