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Tampa Fire Rescue adding life-saving unit at city's busiest station

Posted at 12:13 AM, Feb 22, 2020
and last updated 2020-02-24 04:41:45-05

TAMPA, Fla. — Tampa's busiest fire station will soon receive a life-saving addition to its fleet.

Tampa Fire Rescue officials announced this week that a second full-time ambulance is coming to Station 13.

The rescue unit will operate on a six-month trial period starting next month.

"Having this new service I am very excited, I’m ecstatic. As a matter of fact, it's great," said Deborah Colon, who lives in North Tampa.

Colon knows just how critical a fast response is after calling for help when her husband recently suffered chest pains.

"Because when you’re in that situation, it feels like hours, instead of a couple minutes. It felt like hours."

According to fire officials, Station 13 is the busiest in the City of Tampa and 54th busiest in the entire country.

ABC Action News has learned, staff responded to 11,211 calls for service in 2019, that's 13 percent of all calls citywide.

"We can’t be overworked and under-utilized when it comes to life and death situations like this," said Tampa City Councilman Guido Maniscalco.

Tampa Fire Rescue issued the following statement regarding the new full-time rescue unit:

"Tampa Fire Rescue continuously seeks more efficient and enhanced methods of service delivery. By adding a second full-time rescue unit to Station 13 in North Tampa for the next six months, we will evaluate what we believe will be a positive effect on the community in the long term. This action is in keeping with Tampa Fire Rescue's stated mission to protect our community by providing immediate response to all requests for service."