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Fort Bend County’s One-of-a-Kind Medical Bus Supports Community, Neighbors in Need


September 19, 2020

By Natalie Cook Clark

Local authorities continue to monitor the tropics during this extremely active hurricane season. To serve our area as well as neighbors in need, the Emergency Medical Taskforce in Fort Bend County has added an AMBUS, a specialized medical bus, to its department’s fleet.

Photo credit: Deputy Chief Mike Nixon.

According to the Emergency Medical Taskforce, the AMBUS is a specialized medical bus able to provide advanced medical transportation and evacuation services for large-scale disasters, mass casualty incidents, incident support, firefighter rehabilitation, and other appropriate, like missions. Fort Bend County has the only new generation of AMBUS in the state of Texas.

Recently Evacuated Patients Away From Hurricane Laura

Recently, the Fort Bend County AMBUS was deployed to offer evacuation and medical assistance to those impacted by Hurricane Laura in East Texas.

“As long as our county isn’t impacted, we will go anywhere we are needed,” says Deputy Chief of Operations Mike Nixon with Fort Bend County EMS.

Initially, AMBUSSES were gutted and converted school buses. There are 13 statewide AMBUS vehicles and recently 10 were part of the mission in East Texas.

“We transported patients out ahead of the storm by using our AMBUS, a purpose-built vehicle for moving patients,” says Nixon. “We can move 23 stretcher-bound patients and that frees up ambulance services so that they can be where they need to be.”

Watch a Video Demonstration of AMBUS’ Capabilities

“The crews and AMBUS have performed flawlessly throughout the mission and we are very proud to serve our fellow Texans,” states the South East Texas Regional Advisory Council.

Fort Bend County’s one-of-a-kind AMBUS vehicle was purchased with Urban Areas Security Initiative (UASI) grant funding. Its original design may become the template used by other agencies across the state.

An Active Hurricane Season

Tropical disturbances continue to form in the warmer gulf and ocean waters, and are being closely monitored. Currently, named hurricanes in the Atlantic have gone through the alphabet of traditional names, concluding with newly-named disturbance Wilfred. Meteorologists will use the Greek alphabet to name future storms.

The AMBUS is ready to respond if needed.


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