EMS works to prepare for medical emergencies during eclipse

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BOWLING GREEN, Ky. (WBKO) -- According to a recent press release, Kentucky Emergency Management will activate the state emergency operations center in Frankfort along with a Regional Response Coordination Center in Hopkinsville for the eclipse.

The EMS and emergency departments are working to ensure medical safety for our community here in Bowling Green.

"We've been reviewing our emergency operations plans," explains Jim Williams, EMS Field Operations Manager.

These plans have been revised and reviewed countless times to accommodate for the biggest crowds some have ever seen EMS says. Firefighters, emergency management departments, EMS all plan to work together on eclipse day.

"We're using everybody's strengths to more efficiently respond to anything that comes up," says Williams.

There is a common theme for the biggest issue for almost everyone.

"Traffic is going to be a huge issue," says Williams.

However, it's even more pressing for the EMS.

"We've got to deal with traffic. We've gotta move from place to place," says Williams.

They will be moving around to help anyone in a medical emergency, and expect to deal with a variety of medical situations.

"It's normal problems that we deal with, you might have people with heart problems, or asthma," says Williams.

Although, the most prominent medical concerns are specific to the climate.

"Heat related emergencies are a big thing, dehydration, heat exhaustion, heat stroke," says Williams.

The EMS Med Center is a large trailer. Inside is a 16 patient pop up tent which will be headed down to Simpson County on eclipse day.

In addition, EMS and the hospitals in our community are working together.

"We've consulted with them to maybe have some altered protocols," explains Williams.

It's important to try to keep the emergency rooms as least crowded as possible.

"The emergency rooms in our community stay pretty busy all the time," says Williams.

EMS plan to elevate the overflow of patients in the emergency department.

"Depending on the patients we might do some treat and release more often on the scene," Williams explains.

"Everybody staying safe and being able to stay out there and enjoy what's going on and not have to deal with us," says Williams.

EMS also says to make sure to have plenty of water, snacks, a full tank of gas and pack for major delays. The best way they put it, is to treat this like a winter storm.

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