The Emergency Medical Services station at Independence Park is dedicated to the memory of Drew McKinnis. Who was Mr. McKinnis?
In the late 1980s, East Baton Rouge city-parish officials began discussing how to improve the pre-hospital emergency care. As a result of these discussions, reporting and research by Dick Wright and Dr. J. Thomas Miceli and articles in The Advocate, the Metro Council became interested with councilmen Doug Welborn and John Marshall leading the effort for change.
In late in February 1981, Drew McKinnis, a prominent Baton Rouge attorney, suffered a massive heart attack at home and died. Because of the lack of emergency resources, there was a long response time, delaying his treatment and resuscitative efforts, according to news reports.
The news of McKinnis’ death and the inability of emergency resources to adequately treat him reached then Mayor Pat Screen, who immediately began to implement steps to develop a more advanced system. The city–parish Advance Pre-Hospital Care Committee, was formed, eventually leading to the present-day service.
The EMS station at 545 Lodbell Ave. was dedicated in memory of McKinnis. The Baton Rouge Fire Department opened a new fire station, Wooddale Fire Station No. 8 on Wooddale Boulevard near Florida Boulevard, on Aug. 6, replacing the old Wooddale station adjacent to the EMS station on Lobdell.
Police reports online
You are now able to get a police report online if the report is written up by the Louisiana State Police. Will the Baton Rouge City Police and East Baton Rouge Sheriff’s Office ever have this option?
Response from Baton Rouge police Lt. Don Kelly:
“Yes, we have actively explored this option and are continuing to do so. It is a goal of our agency to eventually be able to offer the public online access to traffic crash reports and possibly other information. However at this time we do not have a timetable for when that may occur.”
Response from Casey Rayborn Hicks, public information director, East Baton Rouge Parish Sheriff’s Office:
“The EBR Sheriff’s Office is currently working to make this option available. We hope to be able to provide this service sometime later this year.”