Ambulance service in northeast Travis County is getting a much anticipated boost, with Travis County ESD No. 2 (Pflugerville Fire Department) becoming licensed recently to start operating our own ambulances.
A new, red Pflugerville Fire ambulance is now responding to medical emergencies, dubbed “Medic 221” and based out of Fire Station 2 in Wells Branch. Another is being kept in reserve for use when the first is out of service, just like fire departments do with their fire trucks. By this summer, Pflugerville Fire will get a third, which will be based at the Central Fire Station in historic downtown Pflugerville, so that it has a pair of ambulances to actively respond to emergencies. The fleet is likely to keep growing in the future. These are in addition to the Austin-Travis County EMS ambulances contracted to operate from Fire Station 3 (Kelly Lane) and Station 4 (Pflugerville Parkway).
The community indicated it wanted this level of service by voting in 2013 to add ½-cent sales tax in the ESD No. 2 areas outside of the City of Pflugerville and the Wells Branch Library District. Since then, the Pflugerville Fire Department has added Advance Life Support paramedics to some of its fire engines while working diligently to add ambulance service. It is a dream come true for Fire Chief Ron Moellenberg, who led the charge to enhance the delivery of emergency medical care in a cost-effective manner.
“This is a direct result of voter support and our strategic planning process,” said Chief Moellenberg. “We created a plan because we saw a clear need in our rapidly growing community, with most of our 8,000 calls a year being medical calls.”
Travis County ESD No. 2 serves about 120,000 people across a sprawling 100-square-mile mix of suburban and rural property, encompassing an area twice as large as the City of Pflugerville. In recent years, ambulances were not immediately available in the district about 40% of the time.
“Because we truly care about those we serve, we are dedicated to enhancing services while also maintaining efficiency,” Chief Moellenberg said. “It will be a huge benefit to our community to have such a highly skilled workforce in emergency services.”