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Posted on Wed, Apr 24, 2013 : 3:30 p.m.

Huron Valley Ambulance receives nearly $150K federal grant to buy driving simulator

By Kyle Feldscher

Huron Valley Ambulance received a grant of nearly $150,000 from the federal government through the Assistance to Firefighters Grant Program, officials announced Wednesday.


Huron Valley Ambulance will receive a federal government grant of almost $150,000, officials announced Wednesday.

HVA spokeswoman Karen Gabrys wrote the grant and said she was thrilled to hear the news on Wednesday. The $149,424 grant will go toward a driving simulator, which will help train paramedics and allow other personnel to practice before going out on the road.

“It allows for changes in weather conditions, road conditions, traffic incidents, just to improve safety,” Gabrys said.

It was the second time HVA applied for this federal grant, but the previous time it was not seeking money for the simulator, Gabrys said.

The nonprofit organization will kick in about $37,000 to complete the purchase of the simulator, Gabrys said. The grant was an 80-20 split in costs for the simulator.

United States Sens. Carl Levin (D-MI) and Debbie Stabenow (D-MI) announced the agencies that received grants in a joint statement released Wednesday afternoon. The Almont Fire Department, Leland Township Fire and Rescue Department, City of Manistee, Raisin Township Fire Department and St. Clair Shores Fire Department also received federal funds.

Huron Valley Ambulance serves much of southeast Michigan, including parts of Calhoun, Genesee, Jackson, Lenawee, Livingston, Macomb, Monroe, Oakland, Washtenaw and Wayne counties.

Kyle Feldscher covers cops and courts for He can be reached at or you can follow him on Twitter.



Thu, Apr 25, 2013 : 3:39 p.m.

Used to work for HVA as an EMT. They give you literally one afternoon in an ambulance behind Showcase Cinema on Carpenter Rd. to learn how to drive properly. This training session does NOT include practice to drive in an emergent situation, which last I checked, is primarily what we do. This simulator will be invaluable not only to the first responders who will use it, but to the entire community of people that will benefit from the better drivers of this non-profit company.

Joyce Williams

Thu, Apr 25, 2013 : 2:35 p.m.

Hi, Kyle, In your HVA background online, you list us as serving Genesee and Macomb counties. Just to clarify, we don't have any 9-1-1 contracts in that area but we may do nonemergency transports there. Thx. Joyce at HVA


Thu, Apr 25, 2013 : 1:20 p.m.

I would question why the Federal government needs to be involved in this. Why do we need to pay tax dollars to a support a Federal agency to redistribute tax dollars to these local programs? Could we cut the middle man and manage these priorities at the state and local levels? Does the current model cost less or better prioritize these expenditures?

Joe Hood

Thu, Apr 25, 2013 : 1:22 a.m.

But furlough the air traffic controllers, nice.


Wed, Apr 24, 2013 : 10:17 p.m.

I have a used Grand Theft Auto Game. I'll sell it for slightly less than $150k.


Wed, Apr 24, 2013 : 9:02 p.m.

Waste of money, simulators can't duplicate real world ex. No wounder traffic drives like it does.


Wed, Apr 24, 2013 : 8:26 p.m.

What? Why is an Ambulance Company receiving funds for the Fire Service Grant? Even better question, why are they receiving funds that could go to a Fire Department when they are sitting on a mint in reserves?