Paramedic recognized for ‘outstanding bravery’

A York Region primary care paramedic who removed occupants from a burning car at risk of exploding has received the Ontario Medal for Paramedic Bravery.

Taylor Collins was heading home after a night shift on September 9, 2023 when she witnessed a car erupt into flames. Upon arriving on the scene, she discovered two vehicles had been involved in a head-on collision.

“Despite the potentially life-threatening risks of being exposed to dangerous flames, heat and risk of explosion, she got out of her car and assisted an off-duty firefighter in dragging the occupants from one vehicle away from the flames,” the provincial government reports.

“Paramedic Collins relocated two occupants from their engulfed vehicle to a safer space. Paramedic Collins’ steadfast commitment to care also extended to offering valuable assistance to the on-duty paramedics who arrived at the scene to provide patient care.”

Collins was among 11 paramedics who received an Ontario Medal for Paramedic Bravery from Lieut. Gov. of Ontario Edith Dumont and Deputy Premier and Minister of Health Sylvia Jones at a ceremony at the Royal Ontario Museum in Toronto on May 27.

“I am delighted to have this opportunity to shine a light on the bravery of our province’s paramedics,” Dumont said. “They face dangerous situations that require a great deal of courage and their actions help create more caring communities. These awards will help Ontarians learn about the selflessness and heroism demonstrated by the 11 recipients and appreciate their remarkable service.”

Paramedic Services Week was celebrated across Canada from May 19 to 25. More than 12,500 paramedics are currently employed in Ontario.

“Paramedics work every day in uncontrolled and changing environments, placing themselves at risk to help others,” President of the Ontario Association of Paramedic Chiefs Michael Sanderson said. “The paramedics recognized here today inspire each and every one of us with their courage and selfless actions.”

Photo: Taylor Collins, a York Region primary care paramedic, who removed occupants from a burning car at risk of exploding, has received the Ontario Medal for Paramedic Bravery. (Government of Ontario photo)

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