Summit First Aid Squad Closes Out a Hectic 2020

Summit EMS Responses – December 2020

Submitted by John Staunton

Summit’s EMS Volunteers closed out a hectic 2020 by answering 170 emergency calls for help in December. These included 108 medical emergencies: 15 falls; 9 motor vehicle accidents, including 1 into a tree; 9 traumatic injuries; 1 woman in labor; 6 cases of overdose or poisoning; and 10 responses to a medical alarm. Squad Volunteers also provided 4 “lift assists” to patients who did not require transport to a hospital as well as 2 non-emergency ambulance transports. 

Among the Squad’s emergency calls in December was a large scale missing person search to which 14 Squad members responded and conducted searches of area buildings, backyards, parks, wooded areas, etc. After a 4 hour search effort, the individual was found in a neighboring town. The Squad also helped a cardiac arrest patient who was successfully revived and has since returned home. In that case, a nearby Summit Police officer arrived on scene almost immediately with an Automated External Defibrillator (AED) and administered a shock to restore an effective heart rhythm. The Squad arrived just a minute later, continued treatment and transported the patient to Overlook Medical Center. 

After treating 9 possible COVID-19 patients in November, the Squad saw just 3 in December.

During December, 22 emergency calls were answered by an off-duty “back-up crew” of volunteers responding from home or work when the on-duty crew is busy. 9 emergency calls were to provide mutual aid assistance to neighboring towns. 19 patients transported to a hospital by Squad members also received advanced life support care from hospital-based paramedics who accompanied the Squad’s ambulance. 

The Squad answers calls for help 24 hours a day and at a variety of locations. December’s responses included 99 to patients’ homes or apartments; 19 for accidents or medical emergencies on roads or highways; 3 calls were to an assisted living facility; 2 in public buildings; 8 at a local business; and 2 to a health care professional’s office. There were also 5 medical incidents on sidewalks; 2 in parking lots; 1 at a church; 1 in a park; 11 at Summit’s Train Station; and 11 on the grounds of a local hospital. 

The all-volunteer Summit First Aid Squad responds to emergency calls 24/7, is entirely funded through private donations and does not bill for service. The Squad is always looking for new volunteers to join its ranks. All needed training, uniforms and equipment is provided. For information on becoming a volunteer, or donating to the squad please call 908-277-9479, or visit their website at

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