Wis. officials to update ambulance standards after 15 year lag
Some EMS officials are frustrated it took this long; records found 23 percent of their ambulances violated at least one state requirement
OSHKOSH, Wis. — This month, Wisconsin officials began updating ambulance inspection standards that haven’t been changed in nearly 15 years.
Some emergency services officials are frustrated it took this long. “This document is now pushing 15 to 16 years old,” said Jim Austad, a member of the state’s Emergency Medical Services Advisory Board and a battalion chief with the Oshkosh Fire Department. “It would be like buying a car today that has 1996 safety regulations.”
A February Gannett Wisconsin Media report on the state’s one-man inspection program found the requirements for medical equipment and ambulance vehicles were widely viewed as outdated in the rapidly changing field of emergency medicine. A review of state records also found that 23 percent of the state’s ambulances violated at least one state requirement from 2011 to 2012, even though inspections are announced a week in advance to most emergency responders.