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Local Knightstown ambulance service struggles to stay afloat

Posted at 8:42 PM, Dec 15, 2022
and last updated 2022-12-15 20:42:44-05

KNIGHTSTOWN — One Indiana town could soon lose its ambulance service — meaning the county would pick up those emergency calls.

Many residents fear they will have to wait longer for help.

A lack of money, staff, and ability to respond to emergency calls are challenges the Southwest District Ambulance Service is facing in Knightstown. That's according to the Knightstown EMS Task Force and town leaders.

The ambulance service serves its local Knightstown community and Wayne Township but come next month, that service is expected to stop.

President of the Henry County Board of Commissioners, Bobbi Plummer, tells WRTV "the citizens of Knightstown, Wayne Township and surrounding areas covered by Southwest Ambulance Service has not gone and will not go without service. New Castle EMS responds 100 percent of the time not only to that area ,but to all areas of Henry County."

New Castle EMS Chief, Brian Clark, says the average response time in rural counties is around 17 minutes.

Resident Donald Acres says those minutes are too long.

"It's 20 minutes to Knightstown. 2 minutes can save a life," said Acres.

Acres wants Knightstown's local ambulance company to stay.

"I think they should be able to get it to be a quicker response time for a lot of people," said Acres.

The commissioners office says the county doesn't pay for Southwest's service.

The Knightstown EMS Task Force says it plans to address funding concerns and push to keep the emergency service local on Thursday night.