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Amish EMT’s Feeling Disrespected

Ambulance Drivers, Unite!

SOCIAL MEDIA SITE FACEBOOK is rife with EMTs and paramedics who are continually bemoaning the indignity of being called "ambulance drivers."  Outsiders have trouble understanding why because Engine Drivers and Truck Drivers seem to always be proud of what they do.  But the dissing of the drivers continues and is now spreading to the various Amish and Mennonite communities where modern conveyances are shunned in favor of more traditional methods.

Popular emergency services website is reporting this week:

EMTs working in Belmont Pennsylvania are sick of being called a derogatory term, Buggy Driver. Belmont is a community made up of mostly Amish. Like many of their Amish brothers their primary means of transportation is horse and buggy.


Ishmael Yoder an EMT with Belmont EMS had this to say. "We might not have all the fancy electronic gizmos you non-Amish do. But we still do the same job, just with more manual labor."

EMT Yoder feels that by calling Amish EMS professionals Buggy Drivers their profession is being degraded. "We do more than act as a horse pulled taxi cab. In the back of that buggy I am applying leaches to infected tissue, using direct pressure on bleeding, and even sometime using CPR."

It doesn't look like the seat-assignment controversy is going to be settled anytime soon.  If anything, it's expanding.  Read the entire, fully researched and well-written article in CallTheCops HERE.

Firegeezer notes:  Call The Cops is creeping up on The Onion for popularity among the satire afficionados.

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Comments - Add Yours

  • Dal90

    I’ve followed posts by an Old Order Mennonite woman named Jean on first Amish Stories (which appears defunct or changed names this summer…) and now on They are similar to the Amish as “horse and buggy” Mennonites, though they allow electricity and use tractors.

    Her husband David is a firefighter/EMT and has permission to carry a cellphone and pager for that reason. When there is a call he goes to the end of their driveway and waits for one of the “English” volunteers to pick him up.

    If they’re transporting an OMM or Amish victim, he often goes as the EMT on the rig. Both groups are bi-lingual speaking German at home, but learning English in their parochial schools — but especially among older women and some men who seldom have a reason to speak English, their fluency may be less than ideal…so David often ends up staying at the hospital to translate until family members can get there and are settled in with the doctors.

    She’s made a few good posts on his fire & EMS activities over the years, of course the only one I could find quickly was this archive:

    The important thing to remember is among both groups, they don’t reject technology for the sake of rejecting technology at all — the basic test that is used is whether the technology makes for a stronger family and community or weaker one. That’s why they prefer horse & buggy over cars — you have to live close, and its easy to stop and chat with a buggy…something you can’t do whizzing by in a car. Its why the Amish reject mains electricity in the home — you don’t get the kids all up in their rooms reading by electric light, or even watching TV alone…but instead everyone is in the living room together until bedtime.

    Most of the groups permit youth to drive vehicles until they are baptised, usually between 18 to 24 years old (some later)…so you may find some young Amish apparatus drivers around. Its something they give up when its time to be baptised which is required for marriage.