City Council Speaker Christine Quinn blasted the fire department after a heat-exhausted intern passed out during her press conference Tuesday and it took 30 minutes for medics to arrive.
“We were not prepared for today’s heat wave,”Quinn told reporters, according to Gothamist.”That girl should not have had to wait 31 minutes. This cannot be the standard in New York City.”
Quinn, who is also running for mayor, was holding a press conference in Williamsburg to discuss her waste management plan when the intern from Councilwoman Diana Reyna’s fainted.
Quinn’s staff immediately contacted 911, but they had to wait 30 minutes for an ambulance to come to the scene.
A fire department spokesman initially blamed the delay on 20 percent spike in calls because of the heat wave, according to NBC.
Later, the FDNY’s chief spokesman, Frank Gribbon, said a basic life support ambulance was not available in the area of Brooklyn where the incident occurred.
“Had this been a true life-threatening emergency, we would have had an advanced life support unit respond sooner,” Gribbon told NBC.
At the same time Quinn said she was going to “get to the bottom” of the delay’s cause, she applauded her staff’s efforts.
“Thankfully, a member of my NYPD security detail present at the event, who is a trained EMT, provided immediate first aid and ensured that the young woman was conscious, provided with oxygen and was hydrated,” Quinn said in a statement through her mayoral campaign.
The wait prompted Quinn to give NYPD Commissioner Ray Kelly a ring to see if she could make things move faster.
“I then called Commissioner Kelly seeking assistance and my city council staff called Hatzolah EMS,” Quinn said. “Shortly thereafter a Hatzolah ambulance arrived and took the young woman to Woodhull Medical Center.”