Calvert County’s long-standing tradition of a 100% all-volunteer fire, rescue and emergency medical services personnel team is coming to an end.
The county commissioners are considering a recommendation to hire career personnel to staff advanced life support apparatus to supplement the county’s current volunteer operations for greater coverage. This plan would address an increase in EMS call volume, and a decrease in volunteer participation.
“I’m a volunteer in my heart … this is a sad day for me,” said Commissioner Earl “Buddy” Hance (R), who was a 30-year volunteer with the Prince Frederick Volunteer Fire Department. “I just know this is the beginning of the end.”
Hance acknowledged statistics that show volunteers are failing to meet the systems needs during nighttime hours, but is concerned about the integration of paid personnel into a volunteer system.