Brooklyn EMS workers say they can’t keep up with growing 911 call rate

CBS News New York

By Hannah Kliger | February 28, 2024

NEW YORK — While data shows Brooklyn has New York City’s highest rate of 911 calls, EMS workers say they borough doesn’t have enough resources to keep up. 

Brooklyn also saw the largest increase in 911 calls since 2021. 

Julianne Tien has been a paramedic with FDNY EMS for more than 15 years. 

“Sometimes you absolutely can see that you’ve made a real difference in someone’s life. There are certain jobs that are for me, really enjoyable, like when someone gives birth and we get to be there,” said Tien. 

Tien works at Station 57, which serves parts of Bushwick and Bed-Stuy. The department is stretched thin, she said. 

“My ambulance personally that is designated for my unit, I haven’t seen it in at least well over six months. I guess it went out for mechanical reasons and then it just never came back. So we’re in a spare vehicle,” said Tien. 

Natasha Nembhard, a paramedic from EMS Station 58 in Canarsie, agreed with Tien after being on the job for eight years. 

“I can’t remember it ever being this bad,” Nembhard said . “Job after job, we’re not getting any breaks because of the call volume.”

Data compiled by the EMS union backs up their experiences.

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