The city of Larsen Bay is set to get a new ambulance soon, after the Kodiak City Council voted unanimously to donate its old Medic 2 to the nearly 100-person community.
At Thursday’s city council meeting, fire chief Jim Mullican unveiled Kodiak’s newest ambulance, purchased with the help of a Code Blue grant. Code Blue is a state program going back to 1999 intended to improve emergency services in rural Alaska. With this addition, Mullican noted, Kodiak now has three identical ambulances less than five years old.
But that left one older ambulance in Kodiak’s fleet, which upon request from the city of Larsen Bay and the Larsen Bay tribal council, Kodiak is going to be donating to the village. In a staff report, City Manager Mike Tvenge explained that the donation would improve emergency services for the village.
“The city of Larsen Bay not only has approximately 80 year-round residents, but they also have an increase in population in the summer, which causes concern regarding general welfare and safety,” he said, “due to the lack of an ambulance to respond for emergencies.”
Councilmember Terry Haines was appreciative of the donation, describing it as mutually beneficial for both communities, and a big step up for community safety in Larsen Bay.
“It’s great that they’ll be able to fill a need that’s essentially to transport patients to the airport in the event of severe injury,” he said. “It’ll be a great, great, great improvement over the sometimes open bed pickup truck that they’ve had to use in times past.”
Kodiak emergency medical services personnel will show representatives from Larsen Bay how to operate the ambulance before they deliver it, Tvenge said.