Sunday, August 23, 2009

God Works in Mysterious Ways- When He Works...

... which does not seem to be all that often...

Now- the official Pedro disclaimer- I know, from my time on the streets that many of you are VERY sensitive and easily offended. Well, sorry- I really think these two tales will fair better if they reach the world uncensored by one such as me.

Dispatched with the police for multiple patients following a domestic. Walked through the front door and found a two year old female running around yelling "Goddamn bitch, Goddamn bitch, Goddamn bitch!". Her four year old brother hollered " Mom, she's swearing again!". We could see Mom back in the kitchen talking to the police officers. She pulled her cigarette out of her mouth and screamed back into the living room at the four year old- "Well, tell her to shut the fuck up asshole"

Dispatched on a busy Sunday morning to a church for an elderly female who had passed out. We made our way through the ongoing service and found our patient sitting in a pew. My partner asked a few brief questions- our plan was to find out what was going on and move to the truck- when we were interrupted by the amplified voice of the preacher. Screaming at us from the pulpit " Quiet! I'm tryin' to preach up here!". My partner shot me a look that I knew at once meant trouble. He stood straight up, pointed at the preacher and yelled at the top of his voice- "What? Is that what your Jesus would do? Bullshit! Jesus would have his ass down here helping us. If you're not helping then shut the hell up so we can hear what this poor old woman is trying to say. " Noboby said nuttin'... never heard any more about it... til now...

Ok, that's it. Sorry I haven't had a lot of time to spend with you kids but I've got a City to save- one knucklehead at a time...

Friday, August 14, 2009

Stay Back 500 Feet

This video's been around for a while, but watch it and then...

... remind yourself not to ever get that close to some one who is so obviously out of control. Let the cops handle that stuff.

Oh, did you notice the police officer had contact with the guy, backed off and then re-acted- keep that in mind too. Reaction is a great thing- unless it comes after the bad guys reaction of popping you in the head. Don't be afraid to ask to have someone cuffed.

Enough, stay safe and keep fillin' those holes in the schedule.

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Being There

People make mistakes. Wow, that was earth shaking. But people, even extraordinarily skilled and careful people, make mistakes. Bob the Builder cuts one a little short, Pavarotti goes a little flat- happens, it's all part of being human.
When you consistently over time become less and less competent at your job, you're no longer suffering from simple human-itis... Nope, you've crossed over. You are a f*** up.

There is a Creative Commons license attached to this image. Attribution-

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Teaching Paramedics to Fish...

... or something, anything...

My pal Hank is an EMT instructor who would like to change the world of EMS- shake it loose from the teeth of the Dinosaurs. Today he called to tell me he had signed up for Paramedic class- he doesn't necessarily want to run on the trucks, he wants to educate a new generation of Medics who will go forth and forever change EMS.

Ok Hank. You asked what I thought, so here goes:
  • You don't want to run calls, but you want to change EMS? Hank, that right there is Dinosaur talk
  • I hate to be the voice of negativity but- buddy, you and a 1000 of your Medic converts will not be able to steal EMS away from the Dinosaurs. You can not undo what they have done. You will not gain control of their fiefdoms
  • You need to re-focus your efforts...
Why don't you go to school to be a woodworking instructor? At least then you could teach people a skill they could use to make a living.

Sunday, August 9, 2009

Say It Ain't So Billy Mays...

... say it ain't so...

Did cocaine kill Billy Mays? The autopsy says it did, but...

Saturday, August 8, 2009

Stupid Is As Stupid Does...

...or- There's a little bit of dumb behind every trauma...

Here's a couple recent calls that came with a twist or two-

Dispatched for a MVC, car on its roof in a busy underpass. On scene we found a Pontiac Bonneville with dealer plates, on its roof as advertised. There were marks on the wall near the entrance to the underpass and about 100 feet of Bonneville roof size skid marks running down the roadway. The driver was out of the car yelling into his cell phone.
Turns out the driver was a used car salesman delivering the Bonny to another car dealer. Just prior to the trip the vehicle had been thoroughly detailed- can you see where this is going? The detail guy had applied a nice shiny coating of Armor-All to, among other things, the leather seats, the steering wheel and the brake and accelerator pedals.
The salesman said all was well, except for a little slippy-slide on the seat, until he was cut off entering the underpass. When he went to maneuver all hell broke loose- his hands slipped on the wheel, his ass slipped on the seat and his foot slid off the brake pedal. He hit the wall, which has a slight bank to it, and rolled.

Dispatched, mutual aid with another towns VFD for a "structural collapse" with entrapment. Enoute we could hear lots of excited screaming from the responding firefighters as well as the small towns EMS supervisor. We were almost convinced something big was going on- and as we pulled up we saw rescuers of all unlikely shapes and sizes running, pretty much in circles, around a nice little brick ranch.
My partner and I grabbed the esesntials- First In Bag and Immobilization gear- all the while being urgently, very,very urgently urged to "Hurry up!" by their EMS guy.
When we walked around the corner of the house we saw that a small four foot square wooden deck had broken partially away where it attached to the home. The side closest to the house fell about three feet to the ground, the other end supported by a pair of 4 by 4's. Down in the low end, healthy but extremely unhappy, was a heavy set female maybe 65 or so and a fat little dog.
They were entrapped I guess- but only because neither was able to pull themselves up into the waist high doorway or kick through the railing and escape.
We let the fire department handle the rescue, called it a "no patient" and went back to the Big City.
An interesting side note- we were called in because this town no longer has any Paramedics. Couple months back all the full time Medics walked into the station, dropped off their equipment and left. The towns been depending on mutual aid ever since. Our crews refuse to even go into the station there because of the hostile attitude of the Supervisor and Director. They both happen to be certified as Paramedics but won't run on the street, preferring to stay at the station and send lollipops on FaceBook. Hey- they're hiring.

Ok, that's it- the sun's coming up and I am going to get my day started...

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

I Would Like to Know Why...

... no one will pull over when you're running lights and sirens, but they'll dive right off the road when you come up behind on a Sunday morning breakfast run?

... you get a head wind on both the in and out bound legs of a bike ride?

... the Paramedic patch has become more important than the Paramedic?

... some people become less competent the longer they do something?

... folks out there can't be still, for a moment, just to think- even though their movements are without purpose?

... why some healthcare providers believe the EMS crews time has no value? Perhaps they learn that from our EMS managers.

... why the drug seekers keep getting their fixes in the ER's?

... the good Medics leave and the bad Medics stay?

... EMS providers everywhere, at all levels, allow themselves to be so obviously and blatantly exploited?

... equipment only malfunctions when you really, really need it not to?

... you end up with the worst partners on the worst calls?

... and why does that fat guy in the third floor walk up decide to call 911 for the knee that's been sore the past month right before shift change? How does he know when we change shifts?

... other Medics calls seem more exciting than your own?

... EMS management plays a real life, perverse form of Trivial Pursuit? Oh, I realize it's all in the details- but the important details, not the trivial, not the trivial...

... our really sick patients are understanding and apologetic (some), while the system abusers are rude and demanding?

... junkies think we really believe their stories? ("Sir, I'm telling the truth sir. Really, my grandmother gave me that pill bottle when I lost mine sir. She must have left some of her Oxycontin in there sir when she lent me that pill bottle sir.")

... I'd really like to know why some EMSers go 100 mph to a call, and then stand around with their thumb up their ass on scene. Tell me, why?

... I read a post on an EMS forum a while back written by an EMS manager whose service regularly advertises for Medics in JEMS. He noted his agency has great wages, benefits and working conditions and stated that he was unable to hire or keep Paramedics- well, why? Why?

... and at the heart of the above issue- why doesn't this guy know why? All in the details perhaps...

Stay safe, don't take crazy chances- after all you're just a patch, plugged into a spot on a schedule.
Pedro loves you anyway...