Superior’s cutbacks place a heavier burden on Chenango’s volunteer ambulance teams

NORWICH – Local fire and EMS officials confirmed Tuesday that Superior Ambulance Service announced it will be cutting two-thirds of its operation in Chenango County, calling the move a major and unexpected loss.

“This is a terrible blow for us,” said county Fire Coordinator Matt Beckwith, who is also the deputy director of the Emergency Management Office. “They (Superior) laid a bombshell on us yesterday.”

Effective Thursday, due to a reported revenue loss, Superior’s Norwich location will have only one 24-hour ambulance covering the county, creating a drastic adjustment for several outlying townships which depend solely on the private provider for emergency transport services, Beckwith said.

After two separate calls from The Evening Sun Tuesday afternoon, Superior Ambulance officials offered no comment.

“They have a major impact,” Beckwith said, listing Bainbridge, New Berlin, McDonough, Pharsalia and Smyrna as several departments that rely heavily, if not totally, on Superior. “The burden falls on all the other EMS providers in the county to pick up the slack. Their resources may have to be pulled to other calls.”

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