Wake County emergency services operating with fuel conservation plan

Wake County News

RALEIGH, N.C. (WNCN) – Crews responded to emergencies as usual in Wake County Wednesday afternoon and plan to keep doing so – despite the gas shortage.

City and county police, fire and EMS services, along with private health systems, have all activated fuel conservation plans.

For the Wake County Sheriff’s Office, it means steps like deputies not idling their cars while they’re in between calls or handling paperwork.

They say their response ability and times aren’t being affected.

“Unless it gets worse, then there are some other steps and phases we’ll have to go too,” said Sheriff Gerald Baker.

Emergency vehicles use the same gas pumps as the rest of us, but the city and county have their own stations for them as well that are being regulated.

“It just taxes the whole system and that is what’s really unfortunate,” said Christian Lawson, UNC Health director of emergency management.

UNC Health said their ambulances all fill up at commercial gas stations.

“From a ground, ambulance perspective, it is very similar to that of a private consumer,” said Lawson. “It is a challenge and struggle at times.”

They’re conserving but not panicking.

“We’re not experiencing any major impacts. We are monitoring everything that we can possibly monitor more closely,” said Lawson.

A lot of ambulances and emergency vehicles use diesel. Officials have backup plans in case it becomes affected, too.

“I would rather plan for the worst, and we land somewhere in the middle than not plan enough,” said Lawson.

City and county employees are only being asked to drive if it’s critical.

They encourage the rest of the community to do the same.

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