D.C. Fire Adding Even More Paramedics, Ambulances

The D.C. Fire Department will announce new paramedic hires, new ambulances and a new computer system Tuesday, News4's Scott MacFarlane has learned.

News4 I-Team has been covering the struggling department for months, tracking slow response times, understaffed stations, and a lack of "single-role" paramedics.

Following the findings of an internal investigation, the department will be announcing nine more paramedic hires next week, 30 new ambulances by the end of the year, and a re-boot of the department's computer system, used to track the ambulances.

"We're talking about trying to resolve a system that's been broken for 15 to 20 years," Fire Chief Kenneth Ellerbe told News4. "We're addressing long-standing problems."

Last month, Ellerbe announced the hire of nine new "single-role" paramedics to the department -- the first of their kind in D.C. in nearly a decade.

A variance has been granted to the D.C. Fire department to hire these "single-role" paramedics through September 2014.

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