So tonight I was half crew, so dispatch had me running around doing lift assists and errands. One of the errands was driving 30 miles or so north to our North Base to pickup paperwork and bring it back down. Sounds easy enough right?
So I'm driving a long, just get off the North I15 and merge onto the W78 I was in the slow lane just cruising a long as usual, and I see a car with its back end sticking out a little bit into the slow lane. I figured they broke down and just couldn't get all the way over, so I slow down and move over some to avoid hitting the person, and while doing this I see someone else had pulled over and was running back to the car. I didn't look at the car on the shoulder that was sticking out too much because i had to deal with getting over in time safely. So noticing this person running back something seems pretty wrong so I flip on the Code 3 lights and pull onto the hard shoulder. Wait for a clear in traffic and step out. Start walking back, and this guy runs up to me and all he said was "He's hurt." So I ask him how many people are hurt, how many cars are involved. And then walk back to the rig and get on the radio (Unit # changed)
388 Dispatch urgent
Dispatch 388 Go
388 I just rolled up on a single vehicle accident with injuries
388 One known pt who is walking - vehicle is blocking the slow lane
388 Standing by on scene until rescue arrives.
Dispatch 388 Copy, Contacting CHP
I backed the rig up a little closer to the scene. Since I was approx 150 feet down scene from stopping distance. Stopped again on the hard shoulder, check traffic, got out. Grabbed some gloves and a C-Collar from the back. And started walking towards the scene. The pt was on the freeway side of the guardrail and was completely alert and able to move around without any difficulty, just had lots of pain in his leg. So I get him with the help of another motorist that stopped before me, over the guard rail, and we move before the scene so we're out of the direction of traffic if another vehicle hits the car blocking the lane.
Once moved out of the way I tell him I'm going to put this on his shoulders and neck to help stabilize his neck and spine in case there's any injuries there from things like whiplash, etc. And he says, "I don't want a big deal or anything like this at all." So I say back, "Do you want me to help you then and start treatment?" And he says he doesn't want anything done and just wants to go home. So I do a verbal assessment and ask orientation questions to confirm that he's able to refuse, ask his age, get a quick history, ask if he lost consciousness, ask if he does have any neck or head pain, pain anywhere else, if he knew why he crashed, etc. By the time I was finishing up with that CHP rolled up and shut down the highway.
There were two officers in the unit, they came up and I let them know, he weas the only passenger in the vehicle and was the driver and no apparent life threatening injures and he is refusing treatment. They so okay, one comes over and talks to the pt for a few seconds to figure out what was going on while the other officer gets into the vehicle and looks around for a few seconds and tries to turn the steering wheel (anyone know why)? And then got out and told his partner that the car isn't moving. At this point fire rescue (paramedics) are showing up with their engine and ambulance. The ambulance pulls behind mine and the engine in front. I give the medics a quick rundown of what's happening, let them know he refused treatment from me. And they come over talk to the pt for a few moments, and then he tells the pt they're gonna move into the ambulance where it's safer and he's just going to look him over and get an AMA.
While that was going on, the CHP officer got into his car, and pushed the car the rest of the way off onto the shoulder, then opened the freeway back up. A few minutes later, the AMA was complete and signed, and the CHP took the pt and started getting a full interview done with him, and checking for alcohol.
Medics said Thanks, have a good night to me, as I was walking back to the rig, and helped me get back onto the highway behind the engine. Then I contacted dispatch, let them know what was going on, and then got cleared to our north base.... All this in a matter of 10 minutes or so.
This was a lot of firsts for me, and really made me more confident and confirmed a lot more that this is what I want to do, and I want to keep going as a medic, and eventually RN. It was my first trauma, first mvc, first time rolling up onto a call (So no time to think about it and prep, just GO), and I was totally running the show for the first few minutes or so until medics arrived.
All in all, I think it went pretty well. I do know that my voice sounded a little shakey on the radio when reporting it, but I didn't miss out on any details, and our dispatcher was able to understand me without making me repeat myself. Talking to the person that initially stopped to help and the pt. I did not notice any shakiness in my voice.
So next time this happens. I'm pretty sure I'll be able to do it a lot smoother and more efficiently.
Oh yeah, ONE person stopped. If this person didn't stop, I would not have noticed something going on, traffic was moving as normal. After being on scene a few minutes, a security officer driving by pulled up behind the scene and put his lights on to warn people of the obstructed lane. But really, only 2 people stopped which surprised me.
I think this is my longest post ever here!