All fire engines within Punta Gorda’s city limits now have a licensed paramedic to ride along with the EMT, expanding the medical care a patient can get before an ambulance arrives. The North Port Sun reports fire engines are often the first to respond to an emergency, since there are more of them than ambulances in Charlotte County. PGFD personnel who’ve gotten a year’s worth of have received yearlong paramedic training can perform significantly more advanced skills such as in-depth patient assessments, defibrillation and cardioversion, advanced airway maintenance, I.V. drug administration, and cardiac monitoring.