WNYT Staff

Updated: 05/20/2016 3:36 PM
Created: 05/18/2016 5:31 PM

AVERILL PARK – School staff at Algonquin Middle School help save an 8th grade student who suffered a cardiac issue during physical education.

The school district says the child became ill during a morning run.

Physical education teachers and the school nurse performed CPR and were able to stabilize the student until an ambulance arrived.

The student is hospitalized.

Poestenkill relies on the Mohawk Ambulance.

Sand Lake and North Greenbush ambulance units rushed to the student’s aid because Mohawk wasn’t available.

Board have formed a committee to come up with a solution for Poestenkill, though it’s an unpopular one that involves a tax increase.


Mohawk released the following statement on Friday, defending their response time:

“Mohawk Ambulance Service asserts there was no delay in response to the Wednesday, May 18, 2016 medical emergency involving a student in cardiac arrest at Algonquin Middle School. Mohawk Ambulance crews responded immediately and arrived as quickly as possible to ensure that trained medical service professionals could deliver life-saving measures to the patient.

Mohawk Ambulance Service has no contract with the Town of Poestenkill and has been providing emergency services at no cost to the Town.

At the time of the call, two Mohawk ambulances operating in Rensselaer County were actively engaged on separate medical calls. To provide additional coverage resources, one of Mohawk’s Albany-based units was en route to Brunswick. While in transit, this crew received the call at the middle school and re-routed to that location, arriving within 12 minutes of the initial call.

Subsequent to contacting Mohawk Ambulance, Rensselaer County’s EMS dispatch called Sand Lake Ambulance. Despite Sand Lake’s station being located less than two miles from the school, Mohawk Ambulance Service crews arrived on scene moments after Sand Lake.

At the time of the emergency, as reported, school officials initiated life-saving measures. Upon arriving at the school, Mohawk Ambulance Service paramedics continued medical care to the patient. The patient was then transported to the hospital in a Sand Lake Ambulance with a Mohawk Ambulance Service paramedic providing care.

“Mohawk Ambulance Service stands by our team and the services we provide to the communities in which we operate,” said James P. McPartlon, president, Mohawk Ambulance. “We will continue to provide the highest standard of emergency medical services for the residents of Rensselaer County and welcome the opportunity to continue open dialogue with local officials.”

“The ongoing support from Mohawk Ambulance in providing these critical services has been invaluable to the Town, as the response to yesterday’s incident demonstrates,” said Robert Bayly, legislator, Rensselaer County. “We’re trying to work with local communities to bring a dedicated ambulance to this area.”

The following timeline represents the sequence of events in response to this incident. It was generated from communications with Rensselaer County Public Service Answering Point (PSAP) and responding ambulance agencies:

08:44– Mohawk Ambulance Service Communications Center receives call from Rensselaer County PSAP.

08:45– Rensselaer County PSAP contacts Sand Lake Ambulance and asks if they are available.

08:46– Sand Lake Ambulance dispatched to call by Rensselaer County PSAP.

08:46– Mohawk Ambulance Service paramedic 37 receives call and is en-route from 787 and I-90.

08:48– Sand Lake Ambulance calls en-route to call.

08:55– Sand Lake Ambulance now on-scene and asking for estimated arrival time for Mohawk Ambulance Service 37.

08:57– Mohawk Ambulance Service paramedic 37 arrives on scene.

08:58– Mohawk Ambulance Service paramedic 105 contacts Mohawk Ambulance Service Communications Center via phone and is en-route to scene.

08:58– North Greenbush Paramedic calls en-route with Rensselaer County PSAP. County PSAP notifies North Greenbush Paramedic that Sand Lake Ambulance and Mohawk Ambulance Service paramedic 37 are already on scene; North Greenbush acknowledges this and states they will continue to scene.

09:11– Mohawk Ambulance Service paramedic 105 arrives on scene.

09:14– Paramedic from Mohawk Ambulance Service 37 begins transport to Samaritan Hospital in Sand Lake Ambulance.

09:35– Paramedic from Mohawk Ambulance Service 37 arrives at Samaritan Hospital.”