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Grant Approval for a UTV will Bring Assistance to Remote Areas

GVFPD emergency vehicles. Photo by Janet Juroch

Editor’s Note: Public Input is whole-heartedly welcomed.  Feel free to leave a message here or call Deanne at the Garden Valley Fire Protection District about this grant opportunity and thoughts of potentially acquiring a UTV. The grant program likes to hear public comments.

The Garden Valley Fire Protection District is finding ways to improve service to the community through acquiring medical equipment such as the recent grant to purchase a new wireless heart monitor. The next item on their “wish list” is an all-terrain utility vehicle that can get into more remote areas for patient care. Deanna Paine has been working on a grant that could bring the GVFPD a UTV to help with patient care in mostly mountainous county.

Deanna explained that there is a grant cycle put out by the Idaho State Parks and Recreation Department for which can service fire district needs. Of the many different programs, the GVFPD found they could apply for an UTV grant to obtain equipment necessary to the fire district. There are two grants programs the GVFPD are applying to with hopes that they get one or another approved. The grant will cover up to 50% and the GVFPD will match the 50% remaining.  Deanna says, “We are using this opportunity to get a really nice UTV for the department.”

The GVFPD sees the need of a well outfitted UTV which will be capable for going into off-road areas. This UTV will come with tracks and will be very capable of getting into the remote areas and bringing patients in that need medical attention. It will aid in search and rescue efforts, users of nature trails, campgrounds, snowmobile trails and remote areas within the Idaho State Parks year-round.

The UTV will be designed to have a sizable back portion of about 8 ft. and capable of transporting a patient and other equipment to definitive care. An ambulance often cannot make trips into woods and mountains, such as groomed snowmobile trails. The enhanced nature of the UTV will be able to provide room for essential equipment and assist the medical needs in remote areas. Jon Delvalle is working with a UTV sales company in Boise to see what kinds of things will be necessary for a fully outfitted transport vehicle. “It will be user friendly for the EMS drivers,” according to Deanna.

The UTV will also be available to assist other emergency departments that GV provides mutual aid to such as Horseshoe Bend, other departments in Boise County and Cascade and Valley County. It will be there if a need arises. Deanna explains, “There are times where there have been hunters or campers that will be out a long way from any road. People fall and break a hip or have an injury.  It takes a long time to get to them when EMS hike in with a stokes [rescue] basket and then carry a patient out. The UTV would allow EMS to get to the patient and be able to provide lifesaving care to them. We are excited about this.”

July 1st is when they hope to receive this grant and then make plans for the customization and purchase. Deanna wants to be informative saying, “GVFPD wants to be proactive and we want to be prepared to take care of our own. It is important to get to people safely and quickly in rugged areas, especially if the weather is really bad. We just want the public to be aware of what GVFPD is doing and the steps it often takes to get equipment.” Deanna Paine is the contact person if there are questions about the grant.  Call the Fire Station directly at 208-462-3175.

Written by Janet Juroch

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