Bike Team *
The Bike Medic Team was organized in May 1996 and is commanded by Captain David Jarashaw as an additional means to deliver emergency medical services (EMS). With the increasing number of large venue, mass gathering events such as the American Music Festival, Boardwalk Art Show, July 4th Fireworks and regional events such as NASCAR motor races in Richmond, Virginia there became an increasing need in the City for this type of service. The mobility of the bikes allows the teams to get into areas where ambulances are limited. Their immediate access at these events provides a quick response to patient care.
The Bike Medic Team consists of 24 members and is coordinated by the Captain of Special Operations. The bike medic team currently uses eight 24-speed mountain bikes with front suspension. Each bike is outfitted with headlight systems, warning lights, rear gear rack and saddlebags to carry equipment. Each team consists of two bikes that together carry a full set of EMS equipment.
The Basic Life Support bike, operated by an EMT-Basic, carries a fire extinguisher, fire resistant coveralls, a semi-automatic cardiac defibrillator, and other basic assessment and first aid supplies.
The Advanced Life Support bike operated by a Shock Trauma, Cardiac Technician or Paramedic carries basic and advanced airway and breathing equipment, equipment to start intravenous lines, and a small drug kit to treat the majority of conditions requiring medications.
Each member wears a highly visible uniform and carries a portable radio for communicating with the Incident commander or other units operating at an event.
Search and Rescue *
Also commanded by Captain David Jarashaw , the Search and Rescue Team provides for the immediate response and timely arrival of a specially trained and equipped search and rescue team to assist police in the search and rescue of lost or non-violent person(s); to apply special procedures and search techniques for locating and removing patients from hazards.
The mission of the Search and Rescue Team is to provide a rapid response to a search effort by establishing an operational team composed of trained professionals, the end result being to find the victim as quickly and safely as possible.
Virginia Beach Department of EMS Search and Rescue Team provide search and rescue and disaster response services to assist people and communities in times of need. This is achieved through the use of professionally trained personnel, certified K9s, and state-of-the-art equipment. We respond to requests from law enforcement, fire safety, and emergency management agencies at the local, state, and national levels. We will also respond to requests for assistance from recognized disaster relief agencies as well as government agencies in other countries. We are a resource for searches for the missing and exploited persons. As a rapid response, internationally deployable group, the team has worked on three continents performing Search and Rescue and disaster response operations.
Virginia Beach Department of EMS Search and Rescue Team incorporate a team of four handlers to enhance out search capabilities for missing people. These dogs are able to follow scent left by lost or missing people over many miles and several days old. Handlers are skilled at interpreting how their dog’s behavior might be affected by wind conditions, ground currents, temperatures, and weather.
For training, handlers incorporate specific scent problems over a variety of obstacles and terrains. Typical training incorporates having the dogs track two to three old scents in a variety of conditions. In order to keep these dogs operationally ready, handlers must train these dogs at least 3 to 4 times a week.
The EMS Search and Rescue Team are available for:
- Lost person searches
- Missing person searches
- Evidence searches
- K9 scent tracking
- K9 evidence searches
- Low angle rescue
- Drowning victims
- Water rescue (limited)
- Event contingency planning
- Recovery of evidence
- Cadaver searches
- Public relation events
- Incident base support
- Communications assistance
- Search management support available upon request
SWAT Medic *
Commanded by Brigade Chief Jay Leach, the SWAT medics assist the Virginia Beach Police Dept. SWAT team with various tactical operations.
EMS department paramedics with a minimum of 3 years experience passed a rigorous screening and physical agility test to be selected. After attending the Police Academy, Basic SWAT School, and CONTOMS (Counter-Narcotics & Terrorism Operational Medical Support) training, the SWAT medics went into service.
The SWAT medics train 16 hours each month with the SWAT Team and must maintain a high degree of physical readiness to pass the bi-annual physical agility test.
SWAT medics are called out on every SWAT mission and operate as part of the SWAT Entry team. They are called out on approximately 100 missions each year.
Examples of Mission Types:
- High Risk Search Warrants
- Hostage Rescue Situations
- Barricaded Suspects
- Sniper Situations
- Armed Fugitive Suspect Arrests
- Civil Disturbances
Marine Rescue *
Commanded by Captain Jim Rose, the Virginia Beach EMS Marine Rescue Team was established in August 1991 to administer a water rescue program which provided for the immediate response and timely arrival of a specially trained and equipped water response dive team. This team has the capability to respond to any and all requests for rescues above and below the water surface, which includes (but is not limited to): boats in distress, drowning’s, near-drowning’s, vehicles in the water, and swimmers in distress calls.
Consisting of specially trained and certified divers, rescue swimmers and boat Coxswains. The team specializes in search techniques to locate and recover patients from hazardous situations in marine environments. The team is also responsible to provide boat patrols along the oceanfront resort areas during the summer and for the numerous special events on and around the waterways of the city.
The Team has several all-weather rescue boats outfitted with state of the art side scan sonars along with a Zodiac boat used for rapid deployment, two jet skis and three dive response trucks. The Virginia Beach EMS Marine Rescue Team continues to evolve with the most highly trained, motivated and skilled individuals utilizing the most advanced equipment. Our team consists of 30+ members, each of whom maintains a minimum certification of crewmember. Members then train towards becoming a boat coxswain, diver and or rescue swimmer.
The Marine Rescue Team was the first dive team in Hampton roads to have certified Public Safety Divers thru the nationally recognized Emergency Response Diving International agency. Additionally, the Marine Rescue Team is one of only seven teams nationally, to hold certification as an Aquatic Response Team thru the United States Lifesaving Association. As a member of the Tidewater Regional Underwater Search and Rescue Team this team continues to participate in requests by regional, state and national organizations for assistance. Past high-profile requests for assistance have included the TWA Flight 800 crash on July 1996 and the search for John F. Kennedy Jr. Piper Saratoga off the east coast on July 1999.
No experience is needed to join; training is provided by the Marine Rescue Team. If you are interested in broadening your horizons and becoming a volunteer member of this elite, tightknit group of individuals please contact Captain Jim Rose at firstname.lastname@example.org or contact Virginia Beach EMS at (757) 385-1999.
Squad Truck *
Commanded by Captain Chris Florio, administers a program that provides for the immediate response and timely arrival of a specially designed and equipped rescue vehicle to requests for rescue in which patients are entangled or entrapped; to apply special procedures and equipment to safely and expeditiously remove the patient; and to provide additional assistance to BLS and ALS personnel when necessary according to medical and operational protocol.
With (3) Heavy Rescue/Squad Trucks in the City of Virginia Beach, personnel are always ready to respond to calls for Specialized Resources, Tools and Personnel. Through Virginia Beach EMS Mutual Aid agreements, EMS units also support neighboring cities in times when their own resources are overwhelmed, they are out of position or unable to respond. Squad Trucks may be called upon by North Carolina to respond to a serious accident due to the close proximity of our Squad-6 in Creeds, or Squad-9 in Kempsville may be called upon by NAB Little Creek for an accident on a Military Transport Ship docked at their piers.
Squad Trucks (commonly referred to as “crash trucks”) are used to provide Hydraulic, Pneumatic, Powered and Non-Powered Tools in support of Technical Rescue evolutions. Squad Truck personnel are cross trained in Rope Rescue techniques, Stabilization procedures, Hazardous Materials Awareness and Support, Specialized Lifting and Movement techniques and all facets of Patient Care in arduous and often traumatic circumstances.
As part of the Technical Rescue component, Squad Truck crews are called upon most often to perform extrication of patients from being trapped in automobiles, farm equipment and industrial machinery. A secondary function of all Squad Truck crews is the direct Medical support of all field activities. Each Squad Truck is a ‘mini’ Mass Casualty Response Truck that supplements Ambulances and Fire Apparatus whenever overwhelmed by large numbers of patients or equipment needs. Squad Trucks can also be responded to Military or Civilian Air Fields and Bases to provide Specialized Tools for Aircraft crashes or Heavy Equipment disentanglement. Future Plans for Squad Truck crews include the support of Marine Rescue Teams and Fire Department Chemical and Biological Response Teams (counter terrorism response).
Duty Field Supervisor *
Commanded by Captain Nick Askew, the Virginia Beach EMS Field Supervisor Team, which consists of specially selected volunteer EMS providers who are all members of the city’s various volunteer rescue squads, take turns to keep to staff this position which assists the Shift Commander (EMS-5) in managing the department’s operational resources on a minute-to-minute basis and provides Incident Command System services at major incidents. These supervisors, while on duty, hold the authority of Captain. These supervisors assists the Shift Commanders and are authorized to modify incident assignments, execute policy, conduct investigations, and initiate corrective actions.
Members of the Field Supervisor Team serve at the pleasure of the Deputy EMS Chief. They are chosen for their demonstrated technical, tactical, cognitive, conflict resolution, and administrative skills. They receive additional training in the Incident Command System and Mass Casualty Incident Management. Their continuing education includes regular updates on the capabilities and techniques of all of the city’s EMS components.
Special Response Team *
Commanded by Captain Chris Daly, this special team is tasked to respond to a variety of incidents and offer logistical support to providers in the field. The team does not focus on patient care, meaning that non-EMTs and administrative members may provide operational support. The team maintains two vehicles and offers a variety of services, including:
- Mass-casualty incident (MCI) treatment supplies:
- Able to treat up to 250 patients depending on the nature of their injuries
- Backboards, stretchers, and patient moving equipment
- Rehab equipment, to support providers on prolonged incidents
- Personal protective equipment
- Incident command support equipment
Members of the team participate in large scale training exercises with our partners in the military, local, regional, and federal government. The MCI team also supports several aspects of provider training for new providers in the BLS academy and for active volunteers. Each team member receives training on truck equipment and operations, emergency driving, incident command, and safety.