Hamtramck ambulances break down, taken out of service

City of Hamtramck relying on outside ambulance service

HAMTRAMCK, Mich. - Persistent mechanical problems for Hamtramck's ambulances almost cost a young boy his life.

 Hadin Khan's nine-year-old son had a seizure and stopped breathing. He called 911 to get an ambulance to his Hamtramck home. He met the crew on their arrival.

"I put my son over my shoulder and took him outside right away," Khan said.

But after his son was placed on a gurney and taken to the ambulance, Khan said the vehicle would not start.

"They told me the ambulance as not working, so I'm so upset," Khan said.

The ambulance blocked Khan's car, so he called on a neighbor to rush the boy to a hospital, The boy is going to be fine.

Acting Hamtramck city manager Kyle Tertzag explained the problem.

"During the years repairing and putting band-aids on, as needed essentially, and we're now at the point where the ambulances are just not reliable," Tertzag said.

With Hamtramck's only two ambulances out of commission, the city has to turn elsewhere when emergency calls come in.

"We now forward those calls over to DMC Care and they take that call," Tertzag said.

The city is running a budget deficit and was recently turned down for a state loan.

Negotiations are underway with city unions to meet the requirements of the state to get the loans.

In the meantime, Hamtramck's two ambulances are undergoing repair and could be back in service next week.  The question is, for how long?

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