Council Speaker Christine Quinn is highly displeased about the 31 minutes it took to get an ambulance to an intern who collapsed during a midday press conference earlier today, charging that the Fire Department was ill-prepared to deal with the heat wave and calling for more ambulances to made available.

In an afternoon press conference—this one held in an air-conditioned City Hall—Quinn blasted the Fire Department's poor response time, saying that if it took her calling Ray Kelly to get an ambulance to the scene, she shudders at the fate of the average New Yorker who lacks the police commissioner's cell phone number.

"We were not prepared for today's heat wave," she said. "That girl should not have had to wait 31 minutes. This cannot be the standard in New York City."

The girl in question was Yvette Toro, an 18-year-old intern working for Councilwoman Diana Reyna. Toro was transported to Woodhull Medical Center, where she was treated for dehydration and quickly released.

That Toro was ultimately unharmed misses the point, Quinn said. Dispatchers field between 3,300 and 3,500 calls on an average day—a number that rises to around 4,000 during a heat wave. In total, Quinn said the fire department increases its number of ambulances by only 14—an unsatisfactory figure, in her opinion.

"There was no surprise that the heatwave was going to continue today," she said. "The fire department’s response today was nowhere near satisfactory, and was completely unacceptable."

In a statement, the FDNY defended itself, saying that the call to assist the woman was considered a relatively low priority on the basis that she was breathing, alert and communicating. Furthermore, Toro was being aided by a member of Quinn's security detail, who happens to be a trained EMT.

"With a high volume of calls during extreme heat, a call for a non-life threatening injury with an alert patient being treated by a trained EMT is appropriately not deemed a high priority, which in some cases like this one, means that it takes longer for an ambulance to get to the scene," the statement said. "But it is critical that life-saving resources be prioritized and used for high-priority, life threatening incidents.”

Quinn, however, said she will continue to push for more ambulances to be made available during severe weather, saying several times that she intended to "get to the bottom of this." She said that based on the briefing she received, the delay was due to a shortage of ambulances, not the city's newly implemented—and according to some, error-prone—911 system.

"I’m deeply concerned that in the midst of a heat wave, we’re not prepared with the number of ambulances we need to respond," she said. "The response was just not acceptable. Not satisfactory at all."