SCDF to institute non-dispatch policy in 2023, ambulances will only be sent out for actual emergencies

SCDF also unveiled the latest generation of its Red Rhino vehicle at the SCDF Workplan Seminar 2022.

Nyi Htet

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Published: 13 June 2022, 2:08 PM

Starting from 2023, the Singapore Civil Defence Force (SCDF) will only be sending out ambulances for cases that are deemed actual emergencies.

This comes as part of SCDF’s new non-dispatch policy which will be implemented next year to manage the increasing demand for emergency services.

Minister of State for Home Affairs Muhammad Faishal Ibrahim announced the new policy at the SCDF Workplan Seminar on Friday (June 10). 

Mr Faishal highlighted that SCDF responded to more than 210,000 emergency medical services (EMS) calls in 2021 — a 12 per cent increase from 2020. 

Emergency calls constituted about 90 per cent of the total calls in both years. 

Mr Faishal said: “SCDF is working on a non-dispatch policy for cases triaged to be non-emergencies by the 995 Ops Centre.”

“This will ensure that our EMS resources are optimised for emergencies only, as committing emergency resources to non-emergency cases will deprive those in need.”

He added that call requests will be “professionally triaged” through the Advanced Medical Protocol System and assessed by trained Ops Centre call-takers. 

At the seminar, SCDF also unveiled the sixth generation of the Red Rhino, also known as the Light Fire Attack Vehicle.


The vehicle will carry a battery operated hydraulic force entry tool, two compressed air foam trolleys, and a fire blanket for vehicle fires. PHOTO CREDIT: FACEBOOK/ASSOC PROF MUHAMMAD FAISHAL IBRAHIM


It will be fitted with the second generation of the Red Rhino Robot — a modular platform used for firefighting and carrying equipment as well as stretchers — by the end of 2023. 

A new Emergency Responders’ Fitness Conditioning and Enhancement (EXCEL) Lab was launched at the seminar as well. 

Jointly developed with the Home Team Science and Technology Agency, EXCEL will allow the  collection and examination of the physiological and cognitive data of trainees.

“This enables the development of customised training programmes to enhance responder performance and maximise officers’ potential through an evidence-based approach,” said Mr Faishal.

Additionally, Hazardous Materials (HazMat) sensors will be deployed across Singapore to enhance SCDF’s capabilities to detect and monitor incidents involving hazardous materials.

Mr Faishal added that the sensors will allow SCDF to determine which areas are affected so that they are able to act upon incidents swiftly.

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