Bluefield Daily Telegraph, Bluefield, WV

Local News

July 20, 2013

Tazewell County Fire & Rescue: Squad resolving challenges

TAZEWELL, Va. — Earlier this month, Tazewell County Fire & Rescue found itself in a pinch brought on by traditionally slow Medicare payments for services rendered, that forced the agency to delay payments to some of its vendors, according to Mike Hymes, southern district representative on the Tazewell County Board of Supervisors.

“The week of July 4th, Tazewell County Fire & Rescue received a visit from a representative of the State Health Department, Department of Emergency Medical Services,” Hymes wrote in response to an email question seeking comment. “It is this group’s responsibility to monitor rescue squads to ensure they are properly manned and stocked with the proper supplies and/or medicines to meet the state guidelines for the level of care they are approved to provide.”

According to Hymes, the review revealed that the squad did not have some of the required supplies and were suspended until they could obtain the proper supplies needed to continue operations. Hymes pointed out that TCF&R is not a county agency, but receives funding from the county like other fire departments. He added that the rescue squad bills for its services like other rescue squads.

Hymes said that he had been appointed to serve on the agency’s board in June, and was notified on July 5, that “the rescue squad’s privileges to operate were suspended pending the acquisition of the proper supplies.” He said that he, along with board members and the board’s attorney notified Tazewell County Sheriff Brian Hieatt, who instructed 911 to remove the squad from the eligible call board until the proper supplies could be acquired.

“One reason the supplies were lacking was that supplies had been ordered, but the supplier was owed for a prior order and thus, the squad could not receive the necessary supplies,” Hymes wrote. “Our board and officers immediately found the funds and wrote the supplier a check for the amount due and the necessary supplies were shipped to the squad, plus other squads had loaned Tazewell County Fire & Rescue supplies and medications to help out.”

Hymes said that he attended his first board meeting on Wednesday, July 17, learned that the supplies were on order and the received clearance from the state to resume operations, but an additional problem came up to delay the restart — the physician who had been serving as the Operational Medical Director, Dr. Robert Cahoon, had left the area without notifying the squad. Hymes said that the squad office is working to find another OMD.

“Once the OMD issue is resolved, the squad will be reactivated,” Hymes wrote. “I want to assure everyone that 911 and the sheriff’s office have cooperated to cover all calls which would normally be answered by Tazewell County Fire & Rescue, and that the agency will return to service shortly and continue to perform their vital services to the citizens of Tazewell County.

“The fire department portion of TCF&R has continued to function as usual during this period,” according to Hymes.

— Contact Bill Archer at

Text Only
Local News
  • Practice scenario nearly identical to real-life tunnel fire

    July 27, 2014

  • Crash... Two transported from Route 460 wreck

    Two people were transported to a Mercer County hospital following a two-vehicle wreck Sunday afternoon on U.S. Route 460 at the intersection with Willowbrook Road.

    July 27, 2014 1 Photo


    July 27, 2014

  • Active warrants in Tazewell County July 27 Active warrants in Tazewell County July 27

    The Tazewell County Sheriff’s Office is currently seeking the following individuals. Anyone with information concerning the whereabouts of these individuals can call the sheriff’s office at 276-988-1167 or the Tazewell County 911 Center at  276-988-0902.

    July 27, 2014 1 Photo

  • DSC_4822.jpg All tunnel lanes open

    Traffic on Interstate 77 was still backed up about 14 miles in Bland County, Va., Saturday evening, but the Virginia Department of Transportation reported at about 6 p.m. that both northbound lanes of I-77 through East River Mountain were open to traffic.

    July 27, 2014 1 Photo 2 Slideshows

  • First on scene... Firefighters’ story: Working together put the fire out

    Lights in the southern end of the tunnel illuminate an odd design beside the catwalk near the left lane of the northbound tube of the East River Mountain Tunnel that transports I-77 from Virginia into West Virginia. Two firefighters who made the initial assault through the total darkness of the soot and smoke-filled tunnel left those marks as they slid their arms along the catwalk wall on their journey back to the light.

    July 27, 2014 2 Photos

  • Magnificent collection... A collection worth a billion words

    From the time that Carl Boyd arrived on the Bluefield State College campus in 1953, Boyd, a Bluefield, Va., native, graduate of Tazewell County High School and proud 1957 BSC graduate, was collecting photos, information and artifacts of significance to BSC’s history.

    July 27, 2014 1 Photo

  • Fans flock to Saints training camp for smiles, autographs

    Lois and Jeff Price have something else to brag about.

    July 27, 2014

  • Habitat for Humanity needs volunteers

    When Peter, Paul and Mary sang the popular Pete Seeger song, “If I had a hammer,” John White of the Tazewell County Habitat for Humanity program would know how to put that hammer to good use to help the organization in its efforts to bring affordable housing to local families.

    July 27, 2014

  • Bluefield farmers market Bountiful harvest: Farmers’ Market offers fun-filled day

    With the sun smiling down on local gardeners, the popular Bluefield, Va., Farmers’ Market was swinging into the season with produce galore, plenty of activities and the well-played bluegrass and old time songs of Crawdad Creek filling the market venue to overflowing.

    July 27, 2014 1 Photo

National and World
Newspaper Deivery Routes Available
Sister Newspapers' News
Local News Videos