Working for faster response times in Davidson County

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DAVIDSON COUNTY, N.C. -- Emergency workers in Davidson County want to make changes to get to you quicker.

In some parts of the county, it can take crews up to 20 minutes to respond.

James Tucci has dialed 9-1-1 plenty of times.

"For chest pains, not an actual heart attack, and for my mother falling on several different occasions," Tucci said.

He lives in Arcadia, one of the slower spots for response times in Davidson County.

"The longest I remember waiting is 15 minutes on the long side, on the short side 10 minutes," he said.

Ten minutes is the average response time, and Davidson County is aiming to be at nine minutes or under 90 percent of the time. None of the county's seven bases are currently meeting that time.

In the last year, county ambulances have gone out on nearly 20,000 calls, which is an 18 percent increase over the last five years.

The call volume actually grew two times faster than the population, which is one reason the county is taking a look at a five-year study they did.

Nine ambulances cover the entire county. Silver Valley and Arcadia are two areas where the county has talked about adding a base, but that can cost more than $600,00.

County Manager Robert Hyatt says the county is looking at all their options.

"It may be moving a base to a more strategic place, it may be we add more resources," Wyatt said.

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