I worked my usual twenty-four hour shift yesterday on Medic-5, and it was a very busy and difficult shift. I lost count on the number of calls we ran on my unit, but the entire county was busy. We have six ambulances that cover the fourth largest county in Oklahoma. Being busy doesn’t bother me, that’s why I’m a Paramedic, so I can help people. But two calls in particular bothered me.
The first call, we were dispatched to a roll over accident that the patient was possibly deceased. The thing that was particularly difficult on this call was we were told it was possibly the son of one of our Paramedics, that was also on duty. He was informed and headed toward the call. Both of our units arrived on scene at the same time, and to the relief, it wasn’t our Paramedic’s son. Now, it is still sad that someone else’s son had passed away, but it was a relief for my coworker. The thing about this call that bothered me was he wasn’t wearing a seat belt. Had he been, he would still be alive. Why don’t people realize that seat belts save people’s lives? I’ve seen it too many times in my career that someone dies as a result of not wearing one. I’m a true believer that God decides when we live or die, but why increase our chances by something as simple as not wearing a life saving piece of equipment? I’ll never understand that one. My heart goes out to his family, he was far too young to die.
The second call that bothered me was we were dispatched to a roll over accident with a possible entrapment around three o’clock in the morning. Once we arrived on scene, we found a four door car on its top. The patient was supine (on his back) inside of the vehicle. As soon as we approached him, the smell of alcohol was overpowering. The man was immensely intoxicated. This is something else I will never understand, why drive drunk? The thing that angers me is the fact he could’ve harmed, or even killed, an innocent family. Fortunately, he was the only one injured and he sustained some pretty serious injuries.
People, take this from someone who has been in EMS for over 18 years, wear your seat belts and don’t drive drunk.