Our EMTs are dedicated to keeping their training up-to-date. We train together once a month at the fire station, and go to as many classes as our area offers.
It is important to practice as much as possible. Since we are a volunteer department, we don't usually see the same problems often enough to keep them fresh in our minds. It is why continuing education is so vital for us and for the patients we come in contact with.
On the Scene of a vehicle collision
Scene safety is our first priority. Assessment is our next step. How many patients, do we need more resources (ambulances, life flight, fire trucks, personnel)?
If you are in an accident and EMTs arrive on scene, you will probably get immobilized.
Mechanism Of Injury is one of the first things we look at. In other words, what forces were at work in the accident.
Was there a head-on collision? If so, we need to be prepared for serious to devastating injuries. That isn't always the case, but as we say, "Hope for the best, prepare for the worst".
Following protocol in Wayne County we
will hold C-spine. That is, keeping your head still to avoid injury to your spine. This is normal procedure and does not mean you have a serious condition. We will also strap you to a long spine board. Don't panic! This is to safeguard your spine,
be there an injury or not. It is also to help immobilize long bone or pelvic fractures. We can't see inside, but we can try to prevent further injury if we suspect there is any.
If there is a pin (where you are trapped in your car, due to deformity of the vehicle in the crash) the firefighters will use the extrication tools in order to open the vehicle enough to get you out safely.
These tools are loud and create quite a bit of power. So, again, don't panic. We will protect our patients from the noise and debris as best as we can.
Some of the tools used for this are here:
|Spreaders/cutters - The hydraulic spreader/cutter, or "Jaws of Life" as they are most commonly referred to, are one of the most valuable rescue tools we carry on our apparatus.
This tool consists of two arms equipped with spreader tips that can be used for pulling or pushing.
The inside edges of these arms are equipped with cutting shears.
This tool is an excellent rescue tool when trying to free people trapped in their vehicle.
Also, because of it's power and portability, can also be used to force doors or other entrances to structures, allowing us quick access to any trapped occupants.
|Rams - A hydraulic ram extends straight out and varies in length from 14" to 48". This tool is very versatile and can be used to stabilize the vehicle, roll dash boards (if the patients legs become pinned under the dash) and forcibly widen door openings.
No call is routine to those in the EMS profession, be it volunteer or full-time. Each patient we see will be treated with the utmost respect and care available.
Most of the runs we see are medical in nature. As an EMT-Basic (first level of EMS) we can provide to you oxygen, take vitals and other support. As an EMT-Intermediate (second level) or EMT-Paramedic (third level),
we can provide a higher standard of cardiac support, as well as other interventions during transit to the hospital. All of our EMTs are trained and certified in CPR and use of the AED. We are trained to be first responders. To keep the critical patient alive and as comfortable as possible
enroute to an ER. Keep in mind we are not doctors, but we follow protocols established by the county we run in and the Medical Director under which we operate.
The National Registry of Emergency Medical Technicians (NREMT), as part of its effort to establish and maintain national standards for EMTs provides registration to First Responders, EMT-Basics, EMT-Intermediates, and
EMT-Paramedics. Registration is obtained by successfully completing NREMT practical and written examinations. For more information go to: http://www.nremt.org.