CHESTERFIELD (WRIC) - Many main roads are clear this evening, but side streets are sheets of ice, so what happens if there's an emergency on one of those icy roads?
The Richmond Ambulance Authority has a plan for times like these. The organization is all about safety and they've got a plan that covers everything from being in the right place at the right time to making sure their employees are safe even when they're off the clock.
From the command center on Hermitage Road, the Richmond Ambulance Authority can predict where accidents are likely to occur.
"If we're in the right place, and the distance we have to drive is less, then it becomes safer," says Rob Lawrence.
When it comes to driving on this mess, the RAA has the right equipment.
"We have studded snow tires fitted to all of our ambulances currently deployed in the field, and this gives us traction. It doesn't mean that we can drive any faster. But what it means is we have a greater degree of control.
They also have the right people behind the wheel.
"From the point that our employees join us, we focus on safety," Lawrence says. "We impress upon them the requirement to be safe drivers."
Just because the ambulance can get around, doesn't mean an employee's personal car can. But the RAA has that covered, too.
"We have some hotels that we work with that offer us spare rooms so if we can't get staff home we can offer them a room, and that allows them to come into work earlier without having to drive too far to give us the sufficient manpower to be out on the streets."
All of this ensures that when someone needs help, they'll be there.
The studded tires are illegal in Virginia unless the vehicle is police, fire, EMS or VDOT.
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