Ambulance Booted

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A New Orleans convenience store says it wants to set the record straight about an ambulance it’s blamed for booting.

Quicky`s Discount employee Mason Alicolone says a separate company controls parking enforcement and the worker who booted the ambulance on Friday was let go, “He hurt us really bad by disrespecting us by putting a boot on an ambulance. We are upset. Once the owner found out he made sure to call the company that does the booting to fire him and to get him off his property.”

He says customers are upset, “It messed up my business. Just harassing us. Everybody`s giving us a hard time, my friend.”

Alicolone says Friday’s ambulance booting all started outside Quicky’s where a man appeared sick, “He was right here and he was OD’ing. He came in the store. We looked at him. We called 911. We called police”

“Our paramedics got a call at the Quicky’s mart at about 3:30 pm,” says Dept. of Emergency Medical Services Jeb S. Tate.

Tate says they responded to the call at Tulane Ave. and S. Broad St. for chest pains. “We show up. Walk in the door. Grab our stuff and start treating their patron. The whole time the ambulance was in the parking lot the lights were flashing.”

Tate says the patient’s condition was non-life threatening, “We load the patient up. Start taking off to go to the hospital and hear a really loud noise. While our crew is inside treating the patient another employee of Quicky’s put a boot on our ambulance.”

“Nobody knew that there was a boot there, says Tate who applauds paramedics for making the correct decision calling a second ambulance. “They transferred the patient form one ambulance to the next and took off to the hospital.”

New Orleans EMS and Quicky’s Discount share different versions of what happened next.

“There was nobody in the ambulance being picked up from the store. That`s a lie!” says Alicolone, who admits the fired employee made a mistake booting the ambulance. “This guy I don’t know. He came from a third world country and, booting a damn ambulance?!”

However Alicolone says the patient did not leave in the ambulance, “That`s a lie, sir. There was nobody attending to us at the store. Nobody. That`s a big difference in the story. There was nobody in the ambulance at the time. They just want to disrespect us and hurt our business. We`re not like that. We help people.”

The Dept. Of Emergency Medical Services says the patient got to the emergency room after the second ambulance was called with an overall delay of about ten minutes.

“Had no clue why it happened. We’ve got a lot of reaction from this story. From the community and the social media has been lighting up, says Tate. “But we`re there to save lives. We`re not there to read your booting policies before we walk into your establishment.”

“They made up the story and they took off with the boot and destroyed their vehicle,” says Alicolone.

In addition to the employee losing his job for booting an ambulance, police gave him a citation for criminal damage to property.