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UPDATED Six shot 2 am Sunday. All 17 staffed Detroit ambulances on other calls. Five ambulances unstaffed. Police transport.

WDIV Channel 4 got the "no ambulance available" aspect of this story.

6 Shot In Detroit, No Ambulances Available Victims Drove To Police Precinct

Six teenagers in a sedan were fired upon. WDIV states that when the victims called 911, were told no ambulances were available.

Clip 1

Shooting victims get to 12th Precinct Station (formerly Western District).

Police call for EMS, still no units available. Transports made by police cruiser.  One of the six has died.

Wisam R. Zeineh, President of the Detroit Emergency Medical Services Association, is interviewed by Channel 4.

Clip 2

Zeineh points out that all 17 staffed ambulances were on other incidents Sunday morning.

States that the city is authorized to staff 22 ALS units, but five units were unstaffed.

Not sure how many of the 17 staffed ambulances were downgraded to EMT ambulances.

Also note the repositioning of the single-role ems providers group from labor to advocacy group.

UPDATED: Fox 5 video

No Ambulance Available for Shooting Victims 1 dead, 5 injured; no arrests

Wonder why there was no fire company first responder assistance sent to the police station? The fire department staffs six squad companies that have made critical transports in earlier incidents. (see John's response)

Mike "FossilMedic" Ward

Comments - Add Yours

  • John

    DFD squads are heavy rescues. They only transport in extreme circumstances-usually when firefighters are injured at fires and no ambulances are available. In such cases, the Squad is already on scene. DFD fire companies do not run EMS calls except for lift assists, so they would not have been dispatched unless it was reported as a pin job or a fire.

    • Mike “FossilMedic” Ward

      Thanks John, corrected made in post.

  • Jay911

    John (or others), can you help me understand why there’s no apparent mutual aid coverage in a situation like this? In the city I live in, if the number of available ambulances gets that low, other locales that surround the city will relocate into the city to provide a semblance of coverage. Granted, it appears on the surface that they would be doing that on a daily basis in Detroit with no reciprocal gain. Is that what it boils down to?

    • CBEMT

      At the very least, get mutual aid for actual calls- happens around here on an hourly basis. We don’t have EMS units relocating into other towns like Jay’s department, but calls that the “home team” can’t cover are dispatched to a mutual aid department/unit.

      Works the same as if one department were requesting an engine from another. Not that complicated, or shouldn’t be at least.

  • Sir Smith

    Detroit EMS seems to keep having problems and I’m not quite sure I understand what the overall problem is here. Is it a money issue, lack of personnel, poor management, or just the perfect storm of all of these elements?

  • Sir Smith

    Detroit EMS seems to keep having problems and I’m not quite sure I understand what the overall problem is here. Is it a money issue, lack of personnel, poor management, or just the perfect storm of all of these elements?

  • John


    Saw an update on the news, the Deputy Mayor is spinning like mad. He states there were ambulances dispatched and they made the scenes but the patients were already gone or the 911 caller gave bad info. No mention of why they were budgeted to have 22 EMS units on duty but had only 17.

    As far as mutual aid, it is rarely used for fires and never for ambulances that I’m aware of. No suburban community has more than 4-5 ambulances of their own, and they are busy enough helping each other. Detroit does occasionally turf EMS calls to private ambulance services. DFD does frequently respond mutual aid to fires in Hamtramck and Highland Park, two small cities that are surrounded by Detroit and grossly undermanned. Only in the most extreme circumstances do suburban FDs respond to Detroit.

    Detroit is much like other high poverty cities. Always behind the 8 ball with resources, yet plenty of money for the political hacks and cronies. Look up former Mayors Kwame Kilpatrick and Coleman Young for some insight.

  • Pingback: Detroit EMS Unavailable For Shooting Victims | The Social Medic()

  • Anonymous

    In listening to the interview with Detroit EMS’s Wisam Zeineh, did anyone else catch the reporters’ comment about “dumbed-down care if you’re having a heart attack”? Just sent WDIV a scathing email. Let the dumbed-down reporter ride with a Detroit BLS unit for a while… teach HIS dumbed-down @ss a lesson.