City moves to implement First Responder services in Laval

Beginning in 2022, firefighters in Laval will be trained to provide First Responder services for medical situations involving cardio-respiratory arrests or acute allergic reactions, city officials have announced.

According to the city, all firefighters in Laval will receive the training beginning this fall, and the service will become available in stages in conjunction with Urgences-Santé.

The city says that currently around 1,600 calls are received for this type of priority medical service. They say the early intervention of firefighters will allow lives to be saved, since firefighters typically arrive on the scene of incidents within three to six minutes.

“Just months away from retiring, I can confirm that I will be writing this announcement in the book about our greatest successes,” Mayor Marc Demers said last week while announcing the new development.

(Left to right) Mayor Marc Demers, Laval fire chief Patrick Taillefer, Yvan Gendron, president and interim general manager of Urgences-santé, Sandra Desmeules, executive-committee member responsible for public safety. (Photo credit: Vincent Girard)

“This is the concretization of a commitment that we made to save the lives of Laval residents. It isn’t every day that this can be said.”

“The population of Laval will be able to count on more than 280 firefighters certified as First Responders to intervene in situations involving pre-hospital emergencies,” said city councillor Sandra Desmeules, an executive-committee member responsible for public safety dossiers. “I thank them sincerely for having accepted to take this step forward to improve safety in Laval.”

The role of the PR-1 First Response certified firefighters will be to maintain the stability of victims suffering from cardio-respiratory arrest and anaphylactic shock, until the arrival of paramedics from Urgences-Santé.

“The implementation of this major project changes considerably our ways of intervening, and this transformation took colossal efforts,” said Laval Fire Department chief Patrick Taillefer.

“I would like to salute the contributions of all those involved since 2014 in the work to build a service based on results and being close to people. Everything is now in place so that the First Responder service can be deployed gradually. More lives will be saved, strengthening the primary mission of the LFD.”

Laval becomes the fourth city in Quebec to deploy a First Responder service provided by its firefighters. An agreement between the firefighters and the city was signed at Laval city hall on May 19. The agreement is good for six years, retroactive to 2019.