Months after breaking ties with Albemarle County, an all-volunteer rescue squad is trying to make it work. The Charlottesville Albemarle Rescue Squad (CARS) has been on its own since February and is looking for help.
The sirens at CARS only sound after 6 p.m. for calls in the county.
"It's been a change obviously the call volume has dropped about 30 percent,” said Mike Berg, the squad’s president.
Last February CARS and the county cut ties after they failed to come to an agreement over ambulance billing. That's when 2 EMTs were removed and the squad stopped responding to daytime calls. Now CARS focuses on Charlottesville and the University of Virginia during the day, but it hasn't completely separated with the county.
"Although we cut the ties for the county in February we still cover calls from them nights weekends and holidays,” Berg said.
With less cash coming in after the split, the squad that helps others could use some help themselves.
"It's important to have those monies to keep services moving and moving forward,” Berg said.
The squad just kicked off its annual fundraiser looking to raise $350,000 - about half of the money it needs to function. That money covers things like ambulances and stretchers.
Even though its routine has changed, the demand remains the same.
"It hasn't slowed down and they don't care if you're career or volunteer people, need help they're going to call 911,” Berg said.
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