The “fly car” that Mid Coast Hospital paramedics use to respond to medical emergencies in Harpswell crashed in Brunswick during a snowstorm on Jan. 7. “That vehicle is completely totaled,” Mid Coast Hospital Director of Paramedic Services Dave Hudson told the selectmen on Jan. 13. “Nobody was injured, thank god.”
The town contracts Mid Coast Hospital to provide 24/7 paramedic services from a base on Mountain Road, next to the town office. They respond to emergency calls in the fly car, an SUV also known as MC-2.
The two-vehicle crash occurred on Gurnet Road in Brunswick while MC-2 was returning to the Harpswell station, Mid Coast Hospital spokesperson Judith Kelsh said in an email. She attributed the crash to “inclement weather.”
Mid Coast Hospital is now using a 10-year-old backup vehicle in Harpswell, but that vehicle has “had a hard life,” Hudson said.
Hudson asked the Board of Selectmen to lease a 2017 Chevrolet Tahoe SUV to the hospital for $1 per year until Mid Coast can replace the totaled vehicle, which was a 2018 Tahoe.
The town’s Tahoe is a former police cruiser, recently returned to the town by the Cumberland County Sheriff’s Office. The town contracts the sheriff’s office to patrol Harpswell and supplies the agency with vehicles.
“We’re requesting that we lease that for a certain period of time, to be determined, and we’re going to try to find a new vehicle, which is difficult to do,” Hudson said.
The hospital will insure and maintain the vehicle, and will give it the service’s colors and name. Kelsh said on Jan. 21 that the leased vehicle “is currently being outfitted with the goal of having it in place within the next two weeks.”
“Mid Coast Hospital is grateful for the ongoing partnership with the Town of Harpswell to care for the communities we serve and to help ensure the safety of Harpswell residents and visitors,” Kelsh said.