TUSCARAWAS COUNTY (WJER) -The future of EMS service in the twin cities is back up in the air with Smith Ambulance announcing plans to withdraw from the region. Owner Bob Smith says Uhrichsville’s decision to start their own EMS service through the Fire Department puts his company in a difficult position. He says they can’t afford to serve Dennison, Tuscarawas and surrounding townships without the revenue they generate from the city.
“Our service down there --to be successful-- needs the entire group of villages, financially, to be able to station a crew there around the clock. And Uhrichsville decided to go into the ambulance business.”
The villages and townships all approved three-year contracts after Uhrichsville signed on for another 18-months with the company. Smith says since Uhrichsville backed out of that deal he can no longer honor the other agreements.
“Because of that, I went ahead and signed agreements with Dennison, Tusc, and the townships, thinking Uhrichsville would make good on that. And then, they terminated us after that, so it left us in a bad spot.”
Smith says the company has put its Uhrichsville station up for sale with plans to discontinue service April 1st. Meanwhile, Dennison and Tuscarawas are threatening possible legal action against the company.