Friday, April 8, 2011

Thanks, Citizens

El Vallejo is a small community surrounded by a much larger one. The citizens can be an unruly lot at times, but when the ka ka hits the ventilador, most are extremely helpful. Sometimes a little too helpful.

"Engine 234, truck 228 DC2, respond to a reported overturned vehicle with persons trapped. This will be in the parking lot of Bader's market, 23877 Vultee ave. with a cross of Mitchell. E234 acknowledge. Multiple calls received."

"E234 Copied the call and is responding."

"Dispatch E234 is on scene, we have a single car TC, it does not appear to be a rollover. We will be checking for injuries. Other responding units continue in and stand by until assigned."

"Truck 228 copies."

"DC 2 copies."

"Truck 228, E234. We have two injuries, both Moderate. Respond in and assist with popping the front passenger door and treating that patient. E234 will handle the driver. Dispatch E234, did you copy?"

"Truck 228, dispatch copies. DC 2, respond at your discretion."

The two patients were quickly freed from the vehicle, packaged and transported. It was after then that the damage down the driver's side was noted as well as the lack of a second vehicle or damage to one of the many fixed, immovable objects located in the area. The captain on the truck asked one of the fifty or so bystanders who had watched the incident unfold if they knew what had happened.

The bystander replied that he in fact had witnessed the accident and that he was then one of the 15 or so participants who had pushed the car over from it's side back onto it's wheels. With the two passengers still inside.


When the Captain from Truck 228 related this story to me, I laughed. I then reminded him that although the bystanders actions were really bad for the patients, it had made his job much easier. Rather than stabilizing the car on its side, then remove the roof, all they had to do was pop a door and package the patient. We will never know of the rapid, violent up-righting of the car caused additional injuries or whether they got lucky and no further damage to the patients was caused.

We did, however learn a valuable lesson. Good intentions paired with a lack of knowledge and leadership can definitely cause problems. Especially in El Vallejo.

Thanks for reading,

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