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  1. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by Catch22 View Post
    This raised this very debate. The ambulance district's attorney at the time had the "opinion" that had we stopped and requested a unit to respond that was further away, we could have been sued for abandonment. His advise was to proceed to the call and let the next unit assist with the MVA.

    How can you be sued for abandonement if you haven't even made contact with the patient?

    Furthermore, what would be the difference if you were involved in an accident while responding, or the apparatus had a mechanical failure and you couldnt respond? Neither of those two circumstances warrant a case of "abandonement", much the same way stopping to render aid to those who need it doesn't.

    Each circumstance will be different and that is why you need to have competent, trained people making the important decisions on the fly.

    But you would be hard pressed to make a legal case, much less a case in the court of public opinion as to why, after you HAVE established contact with the ill or injured, that you simply left them to wait for someone else while you continue to respond to someone whom you HAVE NOT made contact with.

    That IS abandonment. Urban or rural, your geography doesn't alter that.


  2. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by ScareCrow57 View Post
    So what makes one emergency a higher priority than the other emergency. Just because one emergency is closer to the station does not give it a higher priority. Yo can bet your first born that If I find out my ambulance stopped to help someone else before me I will sue the pants off of them. I called for help first and you were being sent to help me. I'm sorry for the other peoples problem, but they have to wait their turn. Their emergency is no more important than my emergency.
    You can sue anyone you like for any reason you like.

    That doesn't mean you will win, and it doesn't even mean your lawsuit will he heard.

    It isn't about the incidents proximity to the station. It is about coming across an incident, then making CONTACT with the ill and injured, and then proceeding to leave them.

    If anyone would have a legitimate case for a lawsuit, it would be the person that has been abandoned, which in this case, is not the first caller.

    Again, it isn't about waiting your turn. Emergency services isn't a dry cleaning service and police, fire and EMS units are rerouted all the time.

    A competent, trained professional making an educated and informed decision to render aid after coming across an accident or sick person, or being flagged down while enroute to another run can easily defend that decision during any frivilous lawsuit you might bring forward.

    An adequate defense for leaving someone injured in the street with no care whatsoever cannot simply be that " they have to wait their turn".

  3. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by jakesdad View Post
    You can sue anyone you like for any reason you like.

    That doesn't mean you will win, and it doesn't even mean your lawsuit will he heard.

    It isn't about the incidents proximity to the station. It is about coming across an incident, then making CONTACT with the ill and injured, and then proceeding to leave them.

    If anyone would have a legitimate case for a lawsuit, it would be the person that has been abandoned, which in this case, is not the first caller.

    Again, it isn't about waiting your turn. Emergency services isn't a dry cleaning service and police, fire and EMS units are rerouted all the time.

    A competent, trained professional making an educated and informed decision to render aid after coming across an accident or sick person, or being flagged down while enroute to another run can easily defend that decision during any frivilous lawsuit you might bring forward.

    An adequate defense for leaving someone injured in the street with no care whatsoever cannot simply be that " they have to wait their turn".
    Jake. Don't waste your time. You're dealing with idiotboy. He'll just keep throwing out "what if" scenarios all day long.

    This happened several times in my career. We stopped. While my crew was out securing and assessing the scene I would notify dispatch of our situation and they immediately dispatched the next closest unit.

    No one ever filed a lawsuit.
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  4. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by ScareCrow57 View Post
    True, when declared by a medical professional. Frantic wife calls in and says her husband is unconscious and not breathing. Perhaps he is breathing, just very shallow. People who are experiencing a medical emergency for a loved one don't always use the right terms. We have had several choking and not breathing calls only to find it they were choking and breathing.
    So.. when I go to a call where the patient is as cold as ice,stiff as a 2X10 and has morbid lividity, I need a "medical professional" to tell me he's dead?

    So what makes one emergency a higher priority than the other emergency. Just because one emergency is closer to the station does not give it a higher priority. Yo can bet your first born that If I find out my ambulance stopped to help someone else before me I will sue the pants off of them. I called for help first and you were being sent to help me. I'm sorry for the other peoples problem, but they have to wait their turn. Their emergency is no more important than my emergency.
    You have flu like symptoms and call for the bone box because you are pukign crap and crapping puke and don't want to barf in your car on the way to the ER...

    A call comes in for a child who fell off a playground slide and is bleeding from a head lac and is unconcious.

    The kid is going to come first... go hire the ambulance chaser and sue.
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  5. #25
    Forum Member CaptOldTimer's Avatar
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    I have for the most part worked in a urban East Coast city where we have all career members, aka paid department, with close to 40 companies at one given time in history.

    I have in several occasions been dispatched on a call and "came up" on a MVA or a structure fire. We have always stopped for that incident, assess the situation and then if we didn't have anyone who needed first aid, aka- EMS, we would proceed to the first call. BUT, only after we had notified the fire radio operator (FAO) and were assured that the services of the fire department werenít required. If we were to needed to remain on the scene, we would advise the FAO this and they would send another fire unit to our original call.

    If it was a structure, we would take that job and request that a box be transmitted for the new call to fill out and get the necessary apparatus.

    I have been sent on an EMS call's at O-God-Thirty only to find that the nurse in the assisted or nursing home had found Mr. Jones or Mrs. Smith cold and non responsive, that by her protocol she would call 9-1-1 and we would go there to find that the person was cold, stiff and dead. Having said that we would have to wait for the ambulance to make the scent before we could clear and return.


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  6. #26
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    As a company officer, the higher priority call is going to get my attention. If I'm going to an unresponsive and pass an accident, I'm going to use my professional judgment as to where my company is needed. Most times, I'd probably dispatch an additional company for the wreck and continue to the unresponsive.

    One night back when we ran only one staffed engine company, we were dispatched to a fall at an assisted living center. As we arrived on scene, they dispatched an infant not breathing. At least twice prior, "falls" at the assisted living center turned into cardiac arrests (one was a code save). So, the C/O felt we couldn't ignore either incident. Paging our volunteers would have resulted in a 7-10 minute delay as would calling for a mutual aid company from a neighboring town. So...

    We dropped one of our hosemen off at the assisted living facility with the AED and jump kit. We went enroute to the pediatric emergency, which required us to pass by our station on the way. We slowed down in front of the station, our other hoseman hopped out and followed us to the second call in our brush truck, which had a jump kit and AED.

    In the end, both patients were breathing and lived to see another day and the fire department handled both calls in a way that appeared seamless to those that needed us. The point of the story is that there are no black and white answers when discussing issues like this. Sometimes, you just have to make like Gunny Highway and improvise, adapt and overcome.

  7. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by CaptainGonzo View Post
    So.. when I go to a call where the patient is as cold as ice,stiff as a 2X10 and has morbid lividity, I need a "medical professional" to tell me he's dead?.
    You don't know that until you examine the patient. It's just like responding to an automatic alarm. You have a mission and you need to complete your assigned mission.

    If you were not enroute, then the second incident would still have to wait for a unit to respond from the station anyway.

    You haven't answered though, what makes one emergency more important than the other?

  8. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by ScareCrow57 View Post
    You don't know that until you examine the patient. It's just like responding to an automatic alarm. You have a mission and you need to complete your assigned mission.

    If you were not enroute, then the second incident would still have to wait for a unit to respond from the station anyway.

    You haven't answered though, what makes one emergency more important than the other?
    "Hour of Power"? "Mission"?

    Clearly you are not in the same fire service as the rest of us are?

    What makes one emergency more important than another? Easy...its severity and the resulting damage of NOT doing something to mitigate it.

    By your logic, you would have us believe that those in the same burning building should be rescued in the order they called 911.

    You can only deal with one emergency at a time, and if you have to go through one to get to the other, then it is encumbant upon you to stop and assess the severity of that emergency you are passing through and render the appropriate amount of care to minimize that emergency before moving on to the next.

    It happens routinely in emergency services without lawsuits and without fools mistaking an emergency run for a "mission".

  9. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by ScareCrow57 View Post
    You don't know that until you examine the patient. It's just like responding to an automatic alarm. You have a mission and you need to complete your assigned mission.

    If you were not enroute, then the second incident would still have to wait for a unit to respond from the station anyway.

    You haven't answered though, what makes one emergency more important than the other?
    So by your line of thought, a smells and bells is more important than a MVA with injuries, in which you roll up on while responding to a bs call???
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  10. #30
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    Originally Posted by moi
    So.. when I go to a call where the patient is as cold as ice,stiff as a 2X10 and has morbid lividity, I need a "medical professional" to tell me he's dead?.
    posted by strawbrain
    You don't know that until you examine the patient. It's just like responding to an automatic alarm. You have a mission and you need to complete your assigned mission.
    You suck at reading comprehension.

    How would I know if the patient was cold, stiff and had morbid lividity if I didn't examine the patient?
    Last edited by CaptainGonzo; 04-08-2009 at 10:36 PM. Reason: spelling correction
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  11. #31
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    What DFDCar1, Gonz, and Harve said in the first 3 posts.

    Stop and assess, dispatch another unit to the original call.
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  12. #32
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    I know this is kind of hijacking, but what do other people do when there are calls that are in between you and the station. Say your a volly who lives 5 miles from the station, you get a call thats enroute to the station. what do you do? Also assuming you dont have turnout gear with you.

  13. #33
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    Quote Originally Posted by scfire86 View Post
    Jake. Don't waste your time. You're dealing with idiotboy. He'll just keep throwing out "what if" scenarios all day long.

    This happened several times in my career. We stopped. While my crew was out securing and assessing the scene I would notify dispatch of our situation and they immediately dispatched the next closest unit.

    No one ever filed a lawsuit.
    You are a knot head. This entire thread is based on a "What if" Just when I though you couldn't get any dumber you go and prove me wrong.

  14. #34
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    Quote Originally Posted by CaptOldTimer View Post
    So by your line of thought, a smells and bells is more important than a MVA with injuries, in which you roll up on while responding to a bs call???
    How do you know it is a BS call until you arrive on scene and assess the situation? Ever arrived at a car fire to find out it is in the garage?

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    Quote Originally Posted by CaptainGonzo View Post
    Originally Posted by moi


    posted by strawbrain


    You suck at reading comprehension.

    How would I know if the patient was cold, stiff and had morbid lividity if I didn't examine the patient?
    Then that means you didn't stop at the accident, but went straight to your first assignment.

  16. #36
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    Quote Originally Posted by jakesdad View Post
    "Hour of Power"? "Mission"?

    Clearly you are not in the same fire service as the rest of us are?

    What makes one emergency more important than another? Easy...its severity and the resulting damage of NOT doing something to mitigate it.

    By your logic, you would have us believe that those in the same burning building should be rescued in the order they called 911.

    You can only deal with one emergency at a time, and if you have to go through one to get to the other, then it is encumbant upon you to stop and assess the severity of that emergency you are passing through and render the appropriate amount of care to minimize that emergency before moving on to the next.

    It happens routinely in emergency services without lawsuits and without fools mistaking an emergency run for a "mission".
    So you are saying that the incident closer to the station takes priority over the incident farther out.

    Here is my issue. You have been dispatched to an emergency, and the people at that emergency are expecting you to arrive quickly. I believe most places are looking at 5 to 10 minute response time. So you abandon the people who called for help first. , while the second emergency hasn't even asked for help yet? That is really putting the screws to the people who had the first emergency situation. From what you guys have told me, they are all emergencies until we prove other wise.

    I still say that in all fairness to both parties you continue on to your original call and request another response to the second emergency. Just because someone lives farther from the station doesn't mean that should get diminished service.You simply tell the people at the accident you are your way to another call and that help is coming. Reasonable people will understand.

    What is more important? A heart attack, A stroke, a cut, a broken bone, a head injury? How much time do you have to treat these things? How about a structure fire with entrapment vs a car accident?

  17. #37
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    Quote Originally Posted by ScareCrow57 View Post
    Then that means you didn't stop at the accident, but went straight to your first assignment.
    Your three working brain cells are overheating again... and we all know what happens when brain straw overheats.
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  18. #38
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    Quote Originally Posted by zackman1801 View Post
    I know this is kind of hijacking, but what do other people do when there are calls that are in between you and the station. Say your a volly who lives 5 miles from the station, you get a call thats enroute to the station. what do you do? Also assuming you dont have turnout gear with you.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ScareCrow57 View Post
    And how do you know that the patient at the medical emergency is not still alive? Did you or someone else examine him?
    Yes, you did:

    Quote Originally Posted by ScareCrow57 View Post
    The first call is for a "lets say man down, aka uncon not breathing". In the world of triage he would get top priority.
    Don't give me a scenario and then change it because you don't like my answer. Are you even an EMS provider? If you do then you obviously need a lesson on how EMS really runs:

    It has to be treated like a first in first out system. Changing priorities willy nilly is just unacceptable and crazy.
    So if I get dispatched to the "grandpa fell out of bed again" and then I get the "I have dialysis today and don't have a ride t othe hospital" then I am stuck on those calls in that order? What if YOU call 911 while I am enroute because your dad just had a heart attack? Since he is the 3rd caller he will just have to wait until I am done picking up someones grandfather from the floor and giving someone a ride to dialysis. Sure, both of those calls are a lot lower PRIORITY than your dads heart attack, but they called 911 first and thats the only thing that counts.

    You remind me of the guy that sits in the waiting room in the ER with a rash on his butt who complaints that all the guys with heart attacks and strokes get to go into the ER before him, even though you got here first.

    So what makes one emergency a higher priority than the other emergency. Just because one emergency is closer to the station does not give it a higher priority. Yo can bet your first born that If I find out my ambulance stopped to help someone else before me I will sue the pants off of them. I called for help first and you were being sent to help me. I'm sorry for the other peoples problem, but they have to wait their turn. Their emergency is no more important than my emergency.
    The prime example of the ME generation ladies and gentlemen. I don't care your baby is dead, I puked first and I called 911 first, so this ambulance is mine. He reminds me of the jerks who push you away from the Taxi because "they saw it first".

    How do you know it is a BS call until you arrive on scene and assess the situation? Ever arrived at a car fire to find out it is in the garage?
    Ever arrive to a "random example of a call" and find out the patient is dead? I can pull a worst case scenario out of me ***** for any type of call that you want.

    A car on fire would not really be a BS call to begin with, so that example is just stupid.

    On all other calls I would go with statistics. An MVA in front of me, statisticly speaking, always means that there is an MVA in front of me. Passing past a house that is burning, statisticly speaking, always means that there is a house that is on fire. An automatic alarm, statisticly speaking, is always bull. I'm going with the odds here.

    Here is my issue. You have been dispatched to an emergency, and the people at that emergency are expecting you to arrive quickly. I believe most places are looking at 5 to 10 minute response time. So you abandon the people who called for help first. , while the second emergency hasn't even asked for help yet?
    Now I just have visions of you hanging out the side of the truck yelling at the people in the wreck: "Sorry, should have called 911." If you drive past a burning house do you stay outside until someone calls 911 and you get toned out?

    What if a cop is enroute to a burglary alarm going off at a business, and he passed a woman getting raped on the street? I mean look at her, sure the guy is on top of her raping her, and there is even 2 more guys waiting for her turn! But hey, she has not even called 911 yet, and besides, I am going to another call that dialed 911 first. Let the next cop handle it.....

    EDITED TO ADD:

    Besides, what makes her getting raped a higher priority than this emergency. ALL 911 calls should be answered in the order they are recieved.
    Last edited by MarcusKspn; 04-09-2009 at 06:09 AM.
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  20. #40
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    Quote Originally Posted by ScareCrow57 View Post
    OK, but what about that hour of power thing. The first caller is 10 to 15 minutes in to their hour. Do you delay the response to the first caller by another 5 or 10 minutes. The first call is for a "lets say man down, aka uncon not breathing". In the world of triage he would get top priority.

    I would in this situation stop to tell the people on the scene of the second incident that you are enroute to another medical emergency and that help has been dispatched to their emergency.

    WTF are you talking about?
    The GOLDEN HOUR (NOT golden shower) applies to trauma, NOT medicals.

    Like the good Chief stated, brain death begins at 4-6 minutes.

    Jesus, who the hell let you out of the window lickers area?
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