FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WANE) Fort Wayne Fire Chief Eric Lahey has responded to a letter from City Councilman Russ Jehl which enquired about what role the Fort Wayne Fire Department plays in regards to the operations of the Three Rivers Ambulance Authority.

The Three Rivers Ambulance Authority (TRAA) has been dealing with staffing issues which has meant in some cases fire departments within Allen County have had to pick up slack and drive into Fort Wayne to transport patients.

Councilman Jehl believes that the city should step in and do something before county fire chiefs either decide to no longer provide assistance, or if they simply don’t have the resources to assist TRAA while covering their own jurisdictions. In his letter, Jehl asked why FWFD can’t step in and help with transports.

In his response dated June 10, Lahey states, “The FWFD should not be staffing transport ambulances with firefighters.”

Lahey believes a simple solution would be to have private hospitals, who already have ambulances, to help assist TRAA.