Garnett, Ks. – Anderson County Emergency Medical Services (EMS), a department of Anderson County Hospital, was recently awarded two grants totaling $6,500 to go toward replacement of the department’s Sports Utility Vehicle (SUV).

Earlier this spring, the Kansas Pipeline Association (KPA) awarded $5,000 to help Anderson County EMS acquire the new service vehicle. This past week, Southern Star Central Gas Pipeline’s Welda District employees presented a check for $1,500, adding to the total grants received.

The remaining costs to purchase and equip the new vehicle were covered by the annual EMS Apparatus Subsidy, which was approved by the Anderson County Hospital Board of Trustees.

The new SUV, a 2015 Ford Expedition XL with less than 30,000 miles, replaces a high-mileage 2010 GMC Yukon that has been in service with the department since 2017.  The vehicle is outfitted with Advance Life Support (ALS) equipment, a new emergency warning light package that includes scene lighting, and communications equipment that allows for direct contact with the E-911 communication center. The new SUV was officially put into service on May 6.

“EMS services across the nation utilize vehicles like this as a supplement to their ambulance service,” shared Troy Armstrong, paramedic and director of Anderson County EMS. “Sometimes the closest hospital is 20 or 30 minutes away from the call scene, and having a secondary ALS-equipped vehicle that can get a paramedic on scene quickly allows our team to deliver higher-level lifesaving interventions and treatments faster than with ambulance response alone.”

“We’re incredibly grateful to our community partners, the KPA, Southern Star’s Welda District, and to our Trustees for their support on this project,” said Armstrong. “It’s without a doubt that this vehicle will help ensure the delivery of pre-hospital Advanced Life Support care during times when our Anderson County citizens and visitors need it most.”

Jody Troyer, a field operations analyst with Southern Star Central Gas Pipeline’s Welda District, along with several Welda District employees, presented a check for $1,500 to Anderson County EMS to help acquire the department’s new SUV, pictured here. Sherry Schmitz, EMS Lead, Troy Armstrong, EMS Director, and Jeremy Armstrong, Anderson County Hospital Administrator, were on hand to accept the award.

Pictured from left to right: Chris Scheibmeir, Bryan Schmit, Bill Orth, Sherry Schmitz, Jody Troyer, Cody Michael, Travis Weseloh, Quinten Webber, Troy Armstrong, and Jeremy Armstrong.

About Anderson County Hospital
Anderson County Hospital is a member of Saint Luke’s Health System, which consists of 14 area hospitals and several primary and specialty care practices, and provides a range of inpatient, outpatient, and home care services. Founded as a faith-based, not-for-profit organization, our mission includes a commitment to the highest levels of excellence in health care and the advancement of medical research and education. The health system is an aligned organization in which the physicians and hospitals assume responsibility for enhancing the physical, mental, and spiritual health of people in the metropolitan Kansas City area and the surrounding region.

About Kansas Pipeline Association (KPA)
The Kansas Pipeline Association (KPA) is a group of over 45 pipeline companies and municipalities dedicated to promoting pipeline safety by collaborating with emergency responders and public officials across the state. The KPA seeks to maintain effective liaison with emergency responders and public officials to avoid pipeline emergencies, as well as to ensure a safe and coordinated response in the unlikely event of an emergency. This effort also strives to increase public awareness of the presence and purpose of pipelines in our communities while educating the public on how to recognize and react to a potential pipeline emergency. Across Kansas, the need for emergency response equipment and sources of funding continue to grow each year. As part of its ongoing effort to address these issues and to promote damage prevention and pipeline safety, the KPA awards a number of grants to qualifying emergency response agencies.

About Southern Star Central Gas Pipeline, Inc.
Southern Star is a leading transporter of natural gas to America’s heartland, with approximately 5,800 miles of natural gas transmission pipeline in the Midwest and Mid-Continent regions of the United States. Our pipeline system, facilities and employees are located in Missouri, Kansas, Oklahoma, Wyoming, Colorado, Nebraska and Texas, with our headquarters in Owensboro, KY.