Fatal injury response delayed by confusion over which ambulance to send

An Atlanta worker died after the emergency call was bounced between two ambulance services during a 30 minute span


By Laura French

ATLANTA — An emergency call about an Atlanta water worker who suffered a serious injury and was bleeding out was passed multiple times between two ambulance services before the correct service was sent, audio records reveal.

The worker sustained deep cuts after a saw he was using for repair work broke and pieces of it struck him in the leg earlier this month, according to FOX 5. It took 30 minutes for an ambulance to arrive on the scene, and the patient died upon arrival to the hospital.

Audio records show confusion over whether responders from Fulton County or DeKalb County should be dispatched, as different parts of Atlanta fall under different jurisdictions.

Grady EMS in Fulton was dispatched first, but the call was then switched to AMR in DeKalb. Although DeKalb was ultimately the correct jurisdiction for the East Atlanta neighborhood that the call came from, FOX 5 reports that call was bounced back to Grady again, and the switch occurred multiple times before AMR finally responded.

An AMR representative said their unit arrived at the scene within 12 minutes after getting the order to respond.

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