Valley Breeze

The Valley Breeze Woonsocket North Smithfield 11-21-2019

The Valley Breeze Newspapers serving the Northern Rhode Island towns of Cumberland, Lincoln, Woonsocket, Smithfield, North Smithfield, Pawtucket, North Providence, Scituate, Foster, and Glocester

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18 WOONSOCKET/ NO. SMITHFIELD NOVEMBER 21-27, 2019 | VALLEY BREEZE | NO. SMITHFIELD BLACKSTONE WOONSOCKET the past five years, while the ability of the department to meet those calls has remained the same. "This is becoming an issue. It's not something that we can take lightly," he said. The result is that North Smithfield often relies on other communities to respond to its EMS calls under a system known as mutual aid. In 2019 so far, the town responded to mutual aid calls from other towns 124 times and requested mutual aid 253 times. The services provided by other communities don't cost the town anything in direct fees, but Chartier pointed out they result in fewer funds charged to patients and insurance companies for transport to the hos- pital. Third party billing fees, said Chartier, are paid to the town that answers the call regardless of where the call originates. Since 2015, he estimated, the town's reliance on mutual aid has resulted in a net loss of about $163,800 that wasn't col- lected for calls answered by other communities. While the financial considerations are a factor, Chartier said he's more concerned about the impact on response times. On average, a North Smithfield Fire and Rescue ambu- lance takes between five and five- and-a-half minutes to respond to a call originating in North Smithfield. If the station has to request aid from Blackstone, that response time increases to five to six minutes, while Woonsocket ambulances take eight to nine minutes, on average, to reach North Smithfield patients. If the town has to request aid from another community further out, he said, the response time can rise as high as nine to 11 minutes. "That's a real problem. You may look at this and say, the difference between five minutes and eight min- ute is not great, but it is if you're not breathing," he told councilors. At the moment, he said, North Smithfield Fire and Rescue keeps five personnel on duty at all times to respond to emergency calls. If those five personnel are already out at another call, the next course of action is to call for mutual aid. "I fear it'll get to a point where we can't handle our business," he said. "We're going to be relying on mutual aid an awful lot." Councilors shared Chartier's concerns for the situation, with Councilor Paul Zwolenski request- ing the chief hold a meeting with the town administrator and the Public Safety Commission to come up with a solution. Chartier told The Breeze he plans to present his recommendations to the commission during that meeting. His main concern, he said, is to take a proactive approach to addressing the situation. "I'm not going to sit here and say that I need to have eight people tomorrow. What we want to do is we want to be proactive, we don't want to be reactive," he said. RESCUE From Page One Planet Fitness announced that XAVIER ALVAREZ, of Woonsocket, received a $500 scholarship as part of the Planet Fitness Teen Summer Challenge. Pictured, from left, Maria Alvarez, Planet Fitness franchisees Stephen Lukin and Anne Marie Lukin, Ariana Alvarez, 6, Planet Fitness scholarship recipient Xavier Alvarez, 16, Planet Fitness Woonsocket manager Dan Cote, and Planet Fitness regional manager Jason Emmett. The Teen Summer Challenge took place from May 15 through Sept. 1, during which Planet Fitness opened its doors to high school teenagers ages 15–18 to work out for free at any of its locations. All teens who signed up for the Teen Summer Challenge were automatically entered into Planet Fitness' Scholarship Sweepstakes. The Villa at Saint Antoine's Executive Chef, CINDY STRODE, center, and her team, BETHANY CHASE, left, and TAMMY SILVIA were awarded top honors at the 10th annual Alzheimer's Association Culinary Challenge held on Nov. 13, at Rhodes on The Pawtuxet, Cranston. Chef Strode's theme, a "Secret Cherry Blossom Zen Garden," featured a realistic koi pond, life size cherry blossom tree, and an Asian- inspired tasting. Her menu included Szechwan pork belly over sticky rice with pickled daikon radish & fried garlic, crispy chicken egg rolls with homemade duck sauce, and fresh almond fortune cookies. Chef's Strode was awarded "The People's Vote." St. Joseph Senior Group announces winners WOONSOCKET – St. Joseph Senior Group will hold trips to Foxwoods on Nov. 22 and Dec. 27. Contact Fran Roy at 401-356-1493 for more information. The last meeting of the year will be held on Tuesday, Dec. 10. Celebrating November birthdays are Roger Marois, Bob Desjardin, Helen Nichols, Fran Roy, Ronald Thifault, Gilberte Desrosiers, Anita L'Etoile, Jeannette Lemire, Irene Frigon, Mary Bianchino, Lynne McAllister, Claire Brodeur, Lorraine Fontaine, Gloria Descoteaux, Vivian Cadieux, Pauline Belisle, Claire Biron, Eddie Carpentier, Rita Paulhus, Marge Deragon, Suzanne Laplante, Priscilla Paulhus, Paul Dutremble, and Lucille Laferriere. Door prize winners at the Nov. 12 meeting were Monique Noel, Dick Guillet, Jeanne Theroux, Nancy Dufresne, and Roland Roy. Raffle ticket winners: Sue Giguere, Gloria Belknap, Claire Brodeur, Joan Joubert, and Lynne McAllister. November Monthly Club Winners: Connie Roy, Connie Plotkin, Raymond Lavoie, Marianne Corriveau, Fran Roy, and Bob Desjardins. The club welcomed new member Sandra Conley. Connecting for Children & Families announces Vision of Hope honorees WOONSOCKET – Connecting for Children & Families, a Woonsocket-based nonprofit, announced its 2019 Vision of Hope dinner raised over $40,000 to sup- port its mission to transform the lives of children through high qual- ity educational opportunities and family support. Amica Insurance was awarded the Community Champion Award and Patrick McGee, superintendent of Woonsocket Schools, accepted the Outstanding Community Leader Award. Awardees are selected for going above and beyond for those in need in Northern R.I. and for providing support and resources for local children and their families. The fundraiser was at Kirkbrae Country Club on Oct 23. The eve- ning was emceed by 2017 "The Voice" contestant and Mount Saint Charles creative arts director, Emily Luther. Honorary event chair, Gary Furtado, president and CEO of Navigant Credit Union, welcomed guests to the fundraiser. Glow Oil heat your home for less 401-475-9955 Check Our Website for Today's Low Heating Oil Price COLLISION COURSE There is a great deal of misunderstanding among Americans when it comes to knowing the difference between an automobile insurance policy's "comprehensive" and "collision" coverage. In fact, one survey shows that more than two-thirds (68 percent) of respondents mistakenly thought that the comprehensive part of their policies would cover damage to their vehicles from a collision. The truth is that comprehensive coverage provides protection against theft and damage caused by an incident other than a collision (such as fire, flood, vandalism, hail, etc.), while collision coverage reimburses policyholders for damage to their vehicles caused by a collision with another vehicle or other object (such as a tree or guardrail). Both types of coverage are optional. Collision coverage has a deductible. This is the amount you pay before your coverage helps pay for your claim. You can typically choose the amount of your collision deductible when you buy coverage. Please call HUNTER INSURANCE, INC. at 769-9500 to learn more. As an independent Trusted Choice agency, we are able to choose from a group of reputable insurance companies and underwriters, offering superior coverage at a competitive price. Our office is located at 389 Old River Rd., Lincoln. NOTE: Liability insurance is legally required, because it covers the costs associated with injuries, death, or damage caused to another vehicle or property incurred by anyone driving your car.

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