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110 Eastern Boulevard North
Hagerstown, MD 21740

TEL 301.733.1112
FAX 301.739.6015
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Community Rescue Service (CRS) was founded in September of 1955 after a building collapse in Hagerstown. This event left the victims without an expedient way to the Hospital. At that time, Hagerstown residents depended on police paddy wagons and funeral directors to transport sick and injured to the hospital. Seventeen original volunteers started the service from the old Middlekauff Garage with an ambulance and donated equipment.

In 1958, CRS moved to the 511 East Franklin Street Station. Service in the early 1960's consisted of first-aid and civil defense rescue training. Most rescue squads were formed out of the civil defense World War II units. Through much of the early 1960's, CRS operated a Cadillac rescue ambulance and an International Carry-all rescue panel van. With the volunteer force growing and the standard of care increasing, CRS formed rescue competition teams. CRS won the overall EMS World Championship in 1968 and 1980 (men’s teams). The EMS competition teams continued the winning tradition again with 2 additional World Championships in 1977 (women and youth teams) and added another 2 World Championships again in 1979 (women and youth teams). In total, CRS competition teams have accumulated 6 EMS World Championships.

In 1968, CRS started a Rescue Squad program. This program was the only heavy-duty rescue squad in the area for more than two decades. The unit was responsible for operating at auto accidents, building fires, and other various technical rescue situations. The company operated a 1972 heavy rescue vehicle, which was replaced by a 1982 unit. CRS currently operates a 2000 Model Rescue Squad.

In 1981, CRS formed an agreement with Maugansville Goodwill Volunteer Fire Company to operate a substation ambulance at their station. The ambulance is now a Paramedic unit staffed by two career staff members of CRS 24 hours each day.

In 1982, volunteerism was at its peak in the company. CRS hired its first career technicians in 1982 to augment a volunteer force that was responsible for making non-emergency patient transports. By the late 1980's the volunteer force was declining and CRS began staffing its ambulances with part time career technicians. By the mid 1990’s, CRS was keeping paid staff on around the clock. Increased call demands required the company to assure that two advanced life support ambulances were always at the ready. A system of rotating shifts was implemented in 1997 and existed in a 24 hour on and 72 hour off schedule.

In 1998, CRS moved to its present headquarters building on Eastern Boulevard where we continue to operate a Combination Paid / Volunteer department that answers over 12,000 calls for assistance throughout the year. In 2007, CRS established its 2nd EMS sub-station station (3rd station in all). This station was originally located on Summit Avenue in the Antietam Fire Company Station #2 building. In the fall of 2007, the downtown sub-station was moved to W. Washington Street at the Western Enterprise Fire Station #4 building. This move was made to accommodate the space needs of the Antietam Fire Company’s new special unit. The placement of a downtown – west ambulance has allowed CRS to significantly improve service delivery to the downtown and western portions of Hagerstown.

Today, CRS operates 3 stations with 8 advanced life support ambulances to handle the increasing call volume associated with the growth of the greater Hagerstown areas. Career shift supervisors are on staff 24 hours each day to handle the daily operational needs of the staff. The EMS supervisors respond on all high priority calls and serve as secondary staffing for the ambulance when call volumes are high. In 1996, the 24 hour on 72 hour off schedule was abandoned in favor of the 24 hour on and 48 hour off with a Kelly day every 3 weeks. The schedule change was implemented to augment salaries as well as allowing for 24 hour shift supervisors to be placed on each shift.

Community Rescue Service accomplishes its current mission through the hard work and fine dedication of the Members and Staff of CRS.