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Detroit firefighters cut medical-emergency response time by more than half

Response time down to 8 1/2 minutes

DETROIT – After two years of training, more than 800 Detroit firefighters are prepared to respond to medical emergencies.

Detroit launched the medical first-responder program in 2014. Since then, 871 firefighters have completed their training, allowing them to assist EMS crews.

The training is part of an all-around improvement with Detroit's emergency crews. In 2014, the average response time was 20 minutes. Now, it's down to 8 1/2 minutes.

Before the training, Detroit was one of only a few major cities around the nation without cross-trained firefighters. Now, Detroit fire is responding to nearly half of all medical emergencies.