Global overview

When you turn up for any traumatic incident you take in what’s called a “global overview”.  You very quickly assess the situation for a rough idea of what’s gone/going on – this includes safety, numbers of casualties, by-standers, damage, critical urgency etc etc.

After a while of being in this job you also pick up on the smaller things too, tending also, not to panic so much.  This is a handy trait to develop as most people who come across a traumatic incident do tend to panic.  In fact, you can loosely gauge the seriousness of an incident by the actions and panic of the by-standers around.  Continue reading

School boy error

“I’m going to be sick . . . ”

There’s generally only two times when ambulance personnel will be seen to move fast.  The first is when someone is genuinely life threateningly sick – and there is something we can do about it (especially kids).  The second is when someone is about to be sick.

I leapt, Gazelle like, to one side thinking it was inevitable.  Noticing he still had another second or two left before eruption I raced into the kitchen to find a receptacle of some sort.


Blood on my uniform

Our patient sat, his legs crossed, on a low wall by the side of the road.  Occasionally and nonchalantly, he would take a drag from a cigarette he held in one hand.  His placid expression stared dead ahead, a silent exclamation to the world in general of nothing in particular.  We’d pass this man by without a second thought if it wasn’t for the fact that he had a surprisingly high fountainous jet of blood spurting from his wrist.  The result of which was gathering in a large pool of blood about his feet . . . Continue reading

I took a deep breath and drove on

People do crazy things when you’re driving on blue lights.  Some will swerve into the middle of the road, some will slam on their anchors and stop right there.  Some will “surf the blue wave” and speed up, some will tail gate.  And some might even do the correct thing by signalling and pulling over to the left!  But not many.

Pedestrians also do crazy things.  And the one thing I really hate and fear is when people jaywalk across busy roads.  But not the ones who make it to the other side – no, the ones who just stand dumb-ass in the middle waiting for a break in the traffic.  You’ll see them all over London, putting their lives at risk, completely unaware and unamused by the vehicles zooming past them in both directions.

Yesterday I had a very scary moment with a Jaywalker . . . Continue reading