TUSCALOOSA, Ala. (WBRC) - The Tuscaloosa County Sheriff’s Department is unique in that it has deputies who are also trained as paramedics.
Recently the Tuscaloosa County Commission spent $50,000 to ensure those deputies can address some emergencies at a moment’s notice.
Tuscaloosa County Commissioners approved the money for two more sets of extrication gear to outfit two medical units in the Sheriff's department.
That unit started in 2012 with just four deputies in four patrol cars.
Now it’s grown to 17 deputies who are also cross trained to be paramedics. Seventy percent of the calls they respond to are related to law enforcement.
The other thirty percent are EMS calls. They can help immediately in some situations or supplement volunteer firefighters with this type of training.
“But they are also available to respond to those EMS calls where you have a heart attack or vehicle accident, something along those lines where in a county of this size it can take 30 or 40 minutes to get an ambulance to that area,” Sgt. Jeff Rudd told WBRC.
Those cross trained paramedic deputies operate in four parts of Tuscaloosa county.
Four units are active during the day and three at night.