|By G. Michael Dobbs|
GRANBY Brian Santos, the district manager for Waste Management in Western Massachusetts, was the willing volunteer in the demonstration of the recently donated equipment the company gave to the town of the Granby a Stryker tracked stair chair.
With Santos firmly strapped into the chair, Granby paramedics and firefighters Mike Pandora and Brendan Taylor showed how easy the chair makes transporting someone down a flight of stairs at the entrance of Kellogg Hall. A set of flexible tracks supports the weight of the injured person on the stairs instead of the paramedics.
Pandora said the new addition to the town ambulance would replace the use of a stretcher.
"You're not going to hurt your back," Pandora said. "And the patient isn't going to grab the [staircase] railing."
Fire Chief Russ Anderson said the new device is a "step forward" as there is less of a chance of injury to both the paramedic and the patient. He noted the stair chair is important in a town where most bedrooms are on the second floor of homes and where there is a senior housing complex.
The stair chair is a $2,500 donation to the town.
As the demonstration ended, the two paramedics received a call for service. They folded the stair chair up and headed toward the ambulance.
"We are proud to support Granby's local heroes with the purchase of this life saving took," Santos said. "The Stryker tracked stair chair will enable Granby's first responders to safety and easily transport Granby residents in need of immediate medical assistance."