Los Alamos Fire Department Forms EMS Bike Team

Courtesy photo
 
By DYLAN MAHONEY and BEN STONE
Los Alamos Fire Department

The Los Alamos Fire Department has formed an EMS Bike Team. This new team will enable our EMTs to quickly reach patients who may be located in an area not easily accessible by our ambulances. 

LAFD first got the idea for the team by observing the police bike team working the July 4 celebration at Overlook Park in White Rock. While we faced delays and access issues getting to patients due to the crowds, the Los Alamos Police Department was able to quickly and safely maneuver throughout the event area and respond where they were needed when they were needed.

EMS bike teams were first developed in the 1980’s and today there are more than 300 Bike Medic Teams across the country staffed by fire departments, private ambulance services and public EMS providers. These teams respond to any event that would present challenges to traditional motorized response. 

Our team’s capabilities will include basic and advanced level care for response in crowds as well as off road trail response. Each bike will carry an AED, first-line drugs, trauma supplies and oxygen to manage respiratory, cardiac, trauma and environmental emergencies.

The team will consist of 8-12 EMT/Firefighters who are comprehensively trained based on the International Police/EMS Mountain Bike Association program. This program is the highest standard for EMS bike teams and focuses on safe effective operations in accordance with all local laws.

Initially we will be providing EMS service at the 4th of July celebration at Overlook Park, during Halloween trick or treating, and at local bike and running races such as the Los Alamos Endurofest and Jemez Mountain Trail Run. Other events such as ChamberFest, movies in the park, parades, or any event the community would like our help with also are on the table. 

The team will be equipped to operate day or night for search and rescue operations or medical emergencies on our county’s extensive trail network. Every year we get calls for people needing medical attention far from a trail head or road and this team will allow us to reach these patients more quickly to assess and stabilize their injuries. 

Another equally important aspect of the team will be collaborating with LAPD to revive the Los Alamos Bicycle Rodeo to provide bicycle safety education in a fun engaging environment for the community. Our first Bicycle Rodeo event will be in conjunction with the upcoming Wildfire Day and annual Elks Easter Egg Hunt March 26 at Ashley Pond Park. 

Together with LAPD, we will be providing safety checks on bicycles, partnering with St. Vincent’s hospital to distribute free helmets to kids, and hosting a fun bicycle obstacle course to teach safe riding skills. Our second event will be at the community health fair in May at Los Alamos High School.

Keep an eye out for information about this and future events and we hope to see you there!

For more information on upcoming bike events, contact the LAFD EMS Division at 505.661.8301.