DC fire station among busiest in country

A D.C. fire truck and ambulance are seen in this WTOP file photo. (WTOP/Dave Dildine)(WTOP/Dave Dildine)
Firefighters and paramedics who spend their days rushing to emergencies are busier in D.C. than those in most other parts of the country.

A survey found that four local fire stations are among the 13 busiest in the country, with D.C.’s Fire Station 30 answering the fourth most calls in the nation.

Station 30, based in Northeast just a few blocks from the Benning Road Metro station, is home to Engine 30, Truck 17 and Ambulance 30.

According to the 2018 National Run Survey, the station went on 22,319 runs last year.

“A lot of those were medical calls,” Vito Maggiolo, a spokesman for D.C. Fire and EMS, said.

The large proportion of medical calls was also reflected in D.C.’s Ambulance 6 in Shaw, which was the fifth busiest ambulance in the country last year, according to the survey.

Maggiolo said that the District’s fire and EMS department is trying to compensate for the large number of medical calls with the Right Care Right Now program, which lets nurses triage callers and assist them in ways other than an ambulance.

“That would allow our ambulances to be available for true emergencies,” Maggiolo said, “and hopefully cut down on these amazing number of runs.”

The stations that beat Station 30 on the list were in Los Angeles, Baltimore, and Nashville, Tennessee. Baltimore’s Steadman station was second, with 30,056 runs last year.

“We’re really proud of the members of the DC Fire and EMS Department who run these amazing number of calls on a daily basis, and provide the kind of service that they do to the citizens,” Maggiolo said.

Maryland’s Gaithersburg Volunteer Fire Department in Montgomery County came in as the 10th busiest in the country, with Prince George’s County’s Silver Hill Volunteer Fire Department sitting at 13th. For Virginia, Fairfax County’s Penn Daw Fire Station near West Potomac High School was the busiest, coming it at No. 28 nationally.

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