Tragedy

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The man that was forced to shoot the kid who was shooting other students may be a hero, but I know other heroes who had to shoot a kid, and the experience is anything but heroic when replayed over and over and over, when sleep is elusive, alcohol abundant and PTSD creeping in from every […]

Dying really isn’t all that bad…

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I work on an ambulance where lives are lost every day. Some die peacefully, some from purposeful acts of violence and some from simple bad luck. Here are a few things I’ve learned by being present at the end. 1. The shock felt when confronted with the finality of sudden death is overwhelming, but not […]

Food shopping while on duty?

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We love to eat. We love to cook. We love to visit the stores, familiarize ourselves with the district, interact with the people we are paid to protect and contribute to the local economy. It’s one of the many great parts of the greatest job in the world. Generations of firefighters have shared the experience […]

On the Shelf

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By Michael Morse There’s a shelf in my garage next to the 2-cycle oil container and the extension cords where all that is left of my career sits. It ain’t much, just an old helmet, five helmet shields, and the books I wrote when I was in the fight. Those were great times, but all […]

You need not be a chief to begin active shooter/mass casualty training

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  by Michael Morse If your department doesn’t have a standard operating procedure for an active shooter/mass-casualty incident (MCI) that includes joint training with law enforcement, it’s time to push for one. Try not to assume that somebody knows what to do. Probably somebody does, but what if we all think somebody else is that […]

Living and Dying on the Street

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I didn’t think I cared. The frequency of the calls made it hard to care. Nuisance calls made up a large part of our routine. Spaced between medical emergencies, calls from the city’s underground emerged. Sivine Thatch made a lot of calls. He was a nuisance. One of many.   The tone from the station’s […]

The Worthless War Adventure

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editor’s note: My take on The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes began some years ago when I made a correlation between EMS and detective work, and thought it would be fun to have an alter-ego. My station is located directly across from Baker Street, Holmes’s home in the original stories by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, and […]

Everybody has a role in EMS

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I became idiot #1 for a day when this was originally published at EMS1, curious to see if people agree with that assessment without the provocative headline that led the story. ( I didn’t write the headline) Houston was underwater, Florida about to be, and I was nestled in my football chair in New England getting […]

The solution

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What if . . . We train our dispatchers to ask questions like medics in the field; assess the callers needs to the best of our ability and send the appropriate  resources: 1. Paramedic 2. EMT 3. UBER or similar 4. Police If none of the above is appropriate  or necessary, send nobody. We do […]

Incident Command for Dummies (or EMS officers)

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I think there are 16 floors, I can’t remember. It’s one of the older housing units in the city. A recent makeover helped, but it is tired. A lady called from the seventh floor, history of COPD and a multitude of other health issues. The call was dispatched as an ALS run, Engine 3 and […]

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