Andrews mayor says he wasn’t notified EMS services would be relocated
ANDREWS, S.C. (WCSC) - In a town of over 2,500 people, the only available EMS ambulance and staff has been moved outside of the town limits of Andrews.
With the former location being relocated in December, Andrews Mayor Frank McClary says Georgetown County never notified him or the town about the EMS location moving.
“We still haven’t received an official notification,” McClary says. “To this day, we don’t know what is going to happen with this building. We have not received information from any official anyone in any position of authority.”
The closest EMS location is now outside of town limits at 15 Big Dam Swamp Dr., taking 11 minutes to drive from the former location at 505 W. Alder St.
The town of Andrews has seven railroad crossings that can delay response times for the four schools, a dialysis center, senior center, businesses and homes located in the area.
Over 300 community members have signed a petition for the EMS location to be moved back into the town limits, saying the risks and ramifications of moving the facility are at the expense of lives.
“Their voice is needed to speak about how much we need EMS here,” Andrews Community Member Jennifer Hunt says. “We really need our citizens of Andrews to speak out about it because this could be life or death for people who if they have a medical event; they’re going to be waiting a longer amount of time for an ambulance to physically get to them.”
Other than the relocated EMS location, the next closest location is 15 miles away, concerning the community if an ambulance takes additional time in traffic, or if two emergencies occur during the same time frame.
“I am worried about our little town not having the ambulance anymore. I’m really worried,” Hunt adds.
The petition also includes the dangers to the EMS services moving for the industries in the area, children participating in recreational and school athletic activities, and the aging population located in the area.
Mayor McClary says he is very frustrated regarding the communication between Georgetown County to Andrews. He also adds that he has reached out to the county on multiple occasions asking for answers and more information regarding the EMS relocation.
“There’re options locally. I just don’t think they’ve thought this through, and it’s not okay,” McClary says. “It really concerns me, and it angers me that no one to this day has said a word.”
McClary will be at the upcoming Georgetown County Council meeting next Tuesday. He encourages concerned community members to attend. The meeting takes place at 5:30 p.m. at 129 Screven St.
The following is a statement from Georgetown County regarding the EMS building relocation:
We are aware this is a matter of concern for residents in the Andrews community and are presenting several options for addressing it, as directed by County Council. We can talk more about those options after Council has had a chance to review them. The decision to close this station was not taken lightly nor made without careful evaluation. It should be noted that there is still a station operating within this service area and the distance/service is comparable to what is provided in other incorporated parts of the county, including the City of Georgetown.
Copyright 2023 WCSC. All rights reserved.