Boston EMS comon terms

Not open for further replies.


Dec 14, 2012
Boston EMS common terms

A post taken from EMS Facebook page. Lots of useless (useful) information.

As requested we compiled a list of common terms/questions you had. Please Comment with any questions so we can add them to this list.

Common street terms:

Push: Police and fire may request a "push" if the patient is deemed to be critical or EMS is needed quickly.

80Z: an old police term used for a non viable patient. This term has been replaced with "Non viable." however, 80z is sometimes still used.

Ring down: Used by crews who do not have time to notify the hospital of the patients condition via CMED. The EMT assigned to dispatch will notify the hospital for the crew via phone.

CMED: Central Emergency Medical Direction: the network ambulances use to provide hospital entry notes or obtain medical direction.

EDP: Emotionally disturbed person- essentially a psych.

REQE: EMS type code for another agency requesting an EMS response.

Trauma X: Sexual assault.

L20: A crew can request this when they anticipate a delay onscene/at a hospital.

H&H: Health and Hospitals, the former name of Boston EMS

BCH: "Boston City Hospital" now known at BMC/Menino.

PDN: Party denies need. When a crew arrives and finds a patient that has no injury/illness you may hear them clear with a PDN.

Ocean frank: A unit logging off.

HOC / OCC: Highway Operation or the old Operations Control Center for the tunnel system and now I-93 and I-90 in the city, Ability to direct responding unit and provide updates directly via Boston EMS radio to the responding units using video cameras and State Police and DOT personnel

UCC: Unified command center. During large scale events/weather emergencies, this command center is staffed by representatives from most city agencies

Common call sign questions:

C #'s: All supervisors are issued a C number, C1 being the Chief of department.

C1: Chief of department

C2: Superintendent in Chief

C3-C5: Superintendents (Senior command staff)

C7-C19: Deputy Superintendents (shift Commanders) 1 DS per shift. Their call sign is their assigned C#.

C20-C29: Captains. 1 Per shift. Their call sign is their assigned C#.

C30-81: Lieutenants. 2 Lt's per shift (Their call sign is either Division 1 or Division 2.) Communications also has 1-2 Lts assigned per shift.

EMTxxx: EMTs individual numbers

Medicxxx: Paramedics individual numbers

Academy 101: Personnel assigned to Training and Quality Improvement Section

Tango 1-5: EMT's assigned to the Special operations divison.

Tango 10: Medical Ambulance Bus capable of transporting multiple patients or being set up a field treatment center.

A in front of a number: IE: A15- A BLS ambulance with two EMT's

P in front of a number: IE P1- An ALS unit with two Paramedics

X-ray units: Bicycle units

HU2: Harbor unit 2. During the summer months EMT's are assigned to the Boston Police harbor unit.

Jake team: 6 wheeled John Deere gators capable of transporting patients to medical tents.

A40: bariatric ambulance

A50/51: Detail ambulances

Squad 70-73: Detail SUV

S61-68: Materials unit/Mobile supply

S70's: Fleet maintence- mechanics

MD1, MD2, MD3: Medical director and associate medical directors.

Common Locations:

The Main/ Fleet: fleet maintence/ mechanics garage. This is also where spare ambulances are stored.

Supply: Located at Massachusetts ave/Albany street.

"The city" or "The Menino": Units commonly use these terms when referring to the Boston Medical Center.

Bradgon: BEMS Special Operations.

Birth 10: The location of the Boston Police harbor unit, Terminal St. South Boston.

The edge: P2/A2 Satelite location on Warren St.

174: An old term used to describe Eddy Everett square. 174 is the fire box number for that location.

The Turn Around/ "The Park": Franklin Park commonly where A12 posts. Also the geographical center of the city.
Last edited:


Premium Subscriber
Jun 13, 2002
"H&H" is still pretty commonly used by the MSP. I haven't heard "BCH Ambulance" in a number of years, though. ;)
Not open for further replies.