This was originally a Live Journal posting. I’ve decided to close that account and move my posts to this blog.
I went to the Emergency Vehicle Response Safety workshop yesterday. It was mainly volunteer firefighters from Happy Camp, Seiad Valley, and Klamath River (a small town about 40 miles upriver from us). The Happy Camp fire chief facilitated, using a program he’d received from his insurance carrier. There was a Power Point presentation and some videos that featured EMT’s telling about accidents they’d been in, plus video footage of ambulance drivers making traffic errors.
It wasn’t what I expected. I was hoping for a class to tell me everything I needed to know to get the certificate to drive the ambulance. But this workshop was good for reminding people of the dangers of being overconfident while driving emergency vehicles. Even though the law states that emergency vehicles have the right of way when using their siren, lights, and horn, it doesn’t always work that way, and they have to watch carefully and go slowly through intersections.
It does no good for the injured party if their ambulance gets into an accident on the way to the scene, and statistics show that about 25% of firefighters killed in the line of duty are killed in accidents en route, most of which occur at intersections.
Bob went with me in the morning. I woke him up at 6:30am to get there. By noon he was so tired, I went back to the workshop without him – he stayed home to sleep. He’s a truck driver, and not really interested in driving an ambulance, like I am. Nonetheless, I appreciated the support he showed me by attending the morning session.
Our ambulance service here in Happy Camp is volunteer. I’ll be taking the EMT-B class for the second time this coming semester, at the local firehall.