Cody's West Park Hospital Starts Bicycle EMS - | News, Weather & Sports in Billings, Montana

Cody's West Park Hospital Starts Bicycle EMS

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CODY, Wyo. -

Cody's West Park Hospital has a new life saving tool for tight places. It's called Bike Emergency Medical Services. It'll be used in the city, and the wild places.

For three days every Fourth of July, Sheridan Avenue in downtown Cody is filled with parades – three days of parades. Everybody is either watching the parade or in it – even Wyoming's Governor and his wife. People come from Yellowstone and miles around to see the Stampede parade. That can create an impenetrable situation for an ambulance.

That's why West Park Hospital decided it needed more than ambulances. It needed a Bike EMS team. They equipped two mountain bikes with emergency equipment, including medications, oxygen, and a defibrillator.

They'll send an agile paramedic and an EMT with radios to patrol the parade route.

Paramedic Crew Leader Josh Campbell explained, “When you have heavy traffic areas like our Fourth of July parade, and things like that, it's easier to get to them through crowds, just faster.

And, the bikes are perfect for off road access, like the upcoming run in the Beartooths. These little ambulances can get to places even an ATV can't get to.

Campbell said, “With the bikes you can get there a little faster while you're waiting for an ambulance. You can figure out a way to get your patients from the scene of the accident to the ambulance.”

But can a bicycle carry enough equipment to save lives?

Campbell said, “We carry enough medications, enough airway equipment where we can breathe for somebody, do CPR for somebody. And we can give enough meds for thirty to forty minutes while we're waiting for an ambulance.”

The program uses professional volunteers, who don't mind pedaling their own weight, plus forty pounds of equipment.

E-M-T Anthony Settineri said, “In an outdoor community like Cody, we have the opportunity to do something and do it well, and provide more care to more people…”

Paramedic Ryan Winchell added, “We're just excited to get out there and try something new, really. It hasn't been done around here yet. So, we're ready.”

Campbell said West Park Hospital, donations, and local businesses paid for the new ambulance bikes.