Peel Region Paramedic Services’ recently opened new Thomas Street station. Though not many may remember, years and years ago there was an ambulance station in Streetsville next to the tracks at Tannery and Broadway. It had two bays and handled the local population’s needs. Times certainly have changed as Mississauga has grown with its greater population and new communities requiring ever more coverage from its Emergency Services.
Nearing the completion of a ten-year plan, the newest component of Peel Region’s Emergency Medical Services infrastructure, a new Division Reporting Station, was recently officially opened at the long-empty corner of Thomas St and Erin Mills Parkway.
There are 1,225 sq. km in Peel and the denizens generate over 107,000 calls per year. To most efficiently and effectively respond to those calls, Peel Paramedic Services is divided into four Divisions each with a Divisional Station. Additionally, twenty-five satellite stations are located strategically throughout the region to provide the most comprehensive coverage and fastest response. Over 600 paramedics, management staff, and 60 logistical technicians (who ensure the ambulances are properly cleaned and stocked after each run) are deployed in shifts to ensure adequate coverage 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.
Peel Region has 11 Supervisor First Response Vehicles, two Emergency Support Units, and two Bariatric Units in their fleet as well as the dozens of ambulances on which we rely. The Thomas Station currently has 22 ambulances on the go at any time and additional vehicles will be coming on stream to satisfy projected requirements.
As with any large-scale installation, the station seems cavernous and utilitarian. On first glance one could be forgiven for thinking it too big. Nothing could be further from the truth. Given the Region’s population of over 1.4 million, having the capacity to provide emergency health care to large numbers of citizens in the event of a natural disaster or other calamity is vital.
Within the main building there is a simple lunch-break room, offices, training space, Quartermaster stores, and a 25,000 sq. ft. garage. This is separate from the 3-bay satellite station also on the grounds. Having so much space allows for all the equipment and resources that paramedics need and use on a regular basis when fulfilling their life-saving rescues.
At some point in the fall there will be an open house at the Thomas St station so residents can have a glimpse of what is involved in running a highly efficient and dedicated vital public service.
For more information, please call 905 791-7800 ext.3951 or visit their website www.peelregion.ca/paramedics.
Many thanks to Brian Parks (above), Division Commander, who provided a tour of the new facility and an explanation of its role, and to Paramedics Chief Peter Dundas – a Streetsville boy!