Rescue squad obtains powered rescue chair

Contributed by Mike Feazel

The Lake Monticello Rescue Squad officially took delivery of a Stryker Xpedition powered stair chair Friday, using money donated by the owners and employees of S&N Communications and AAP Construction, in a ceremony at Lake Monticello Volunteer Fire & Rescue.

The $16,500 powered chair will be capable of handling up to 400-pound patients and move them up or down a 45-degree stairway or terrain to safety. It runs on a flexible belt track to increase traction and minimize damage to stairways or other surfaces.   

Heather Powell, co-owner of the companies, said most of the money to buy the high-end rescue chair was raised through a food booth at the Fluvanna County Fair in August, with the companies donating the rest. S&N is the contract installer of Firefly fiber networks. She presented a ceremonial check for the chair to the rescue squad.

“It’s an amazing community and we are thankful for all the support from the community and local businesses,” said Rescue Squad Chief Eddie Shifflett. The chair will allow rescuers to safely and ergonomically move patients up and down stairs, utilizing a powered track to help decrease the risk of rescuer injury and fatigue, Shifflett said: “This particular chair will be on a quick response vehicle that is set up just for moving patients.”

The Powells have operated their food service at numerous charitable events around central Virginia, including at charitable and sports events. “We just love to give back to our community,” Heather Powell said.

Training rescue squad members to use the new chair will begin Sept. 28, Oct. 2 and Oct. 7, 

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