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Generating Life

Updated: Monday, December 9 2013, 10:09 PM EST
It's one more example of preventive medicine.  News 13's Jay Siltzer shows us how one local hospital has made a huge investment to keep the lights on during a crisis.

It's the newest and biggest generator in Macon County with the greatest task: Keeping Angel Medical Center in Franklin running during a power outage.

Marty Wadewitz, Angel Medical Venter v.P., "we are well aware what happened with Sandy, what happened with Katrina, and with the blizzard of 93."

Those events helped convince hospital administrators to invest $350,000 in a generator upgrade to keep patients safe and comfortable.

Ray Romano, patient, "it could get awfully hot in here if the air conditioner died."

72-year-old Ray Romano speaks not only as a surgery patient, but also as a former maintenance worker at the hospital.

Romano, "if you don't turn on these machines in the hospital within 10 seconds, people could die. That's how quick you need that, they're on life support."

Marty Wadewitz, "right now we're at six seconds, it's like a race car going from zero to 60 in a couple of seconds."

Underneath this concrete is the generator fuel tank with a capacity of 20,000 gallons. On any given day, it must have a four-day supply; most of the time it has at least six.

Gary Thompson, Angel Engineering Director, "we can run through the blizzard or Ivan, we can handle it."

All the while patients might never know the difference.  Interestingly enough, some of the components for the generator were actually made at the Caterpillar plant in Macon County.Generating Life

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