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911 stories

  1. Dec 2, 2011 #1

    Ivan Seeking

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    Who has been involved in a true life-threatening emergency? How did you react?

    I was just reminded of one ugly experience that I had, by a story on the news. When about age thirteen [eh, probably a little older] I was riding a bus to the beach [in S. Cal]. Suddenly an older gentleman sitting a few rows in front of me collapsed and fell into the aisle. Everyone on the bus saw what happened and just sat there. Finally I jumped up and checked and the man wasn't breathing. But I could feel a pulse. It took a moment to gather my wits but I quickly realized that it was time to use my lifesaving training [I was in training to be a lifegaurd and had been or still was a Boy Scout]. I rolled the guy over to clear his mouth and was just about to start mouth-to-mouth, with my face only inches from his, when he started vomiting. Man, I nearly vomited right back on his face! Luckily, in the mean time, the bus driver had seen a cop and flagged him down. As I sat there trying to figure out what to do the cop came in a took over.

    I spent the rest of the day being thankful that I had never managed to start mouth-to-mouth.
     
    Last edited: Dec 2, 2011
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  3. Dec 2, 2011 #2

    Evo

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    I witnessed a murder. Guy was shot about 20 feet away on an empty street, just me and my girlfriend on one side, he on the other. We thought he was drunk, we needed to get to where he was to get to our car, so we crossed the street and started to to walk around him when we noticed a pool of dark liquid forming around him (it was night). Then a couple walked out of a club and the woman started screaming. We just stood there like deer in headlights. I was 14, she was 16.

    Then there was a horrific car accident that had just happened. People had just started stopping and running to the car, there was a little boy that had just gotten out of the backseat. The mother was driving. Two men wrenched the driver's car door open and the woman's torso fell over, a woman tackled the boy and laid on top of him so he couldn't see. I decided to leave, nothing I could do.
     
  4. Dec 2, 2011 #3

    turbo

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    When I was a kid, I usually spent a couple of weeks each summer with my grandparents. When the phone would ring at night, it was always a "wrecker call" and my grandmother would roll out of bed, go downstairs, start a pot of coffee, and start putting together a whole loaf of sandwiches. They were considerate, and my grandfather tried to limit my participation to recovering the vehicle, it there were no victims in evidence. I loved being trusted to hooking up a super-duper wrecker to retrieve a vehicle that was out of the capacity of local rigs. Still, the carnage at some scenes was hard to forget.
     
  5. Dec 2, 2011 #4

    dlgoff

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    I don't think I can top the murder. Does seeing the results of a car rolling over the drivers head count (leaving out graphics)? Or responding to an accident only to find a charred body in the back seat (leaving out more graphics)? And these are just the tip of the iceberg.
     
  6. Dec 2, 2011 #5

    DaveC426913

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    Got within touching range of a teenager who had wrapped his car around a telephone pole so hard he split the car in half.

    He was still moving (slightly) when I got there, but did not survive.
     
  7. Dec 2, 2011 #6
    We were at dinner when I suddenly noticed that my youngest daughter (age 6 then) turned purple. She was silent and started to gesticulate. In the next second I was next to her, picked her up, turned her upside down, holding her at the ankles and pulled her up quickly with a shock. That popped the lump of meat out of her throat. Never was I so releaved to hear her crying.

    The most remarkable thing was that she weighted nothing. Light as a feather. I realized that that was an artefact of the adrenaline shot.
     
  8. Dec 2, 2011 #7

    Evo

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    I had a black lab/chow mix and one day I noticed he was choking really bad. I knew how to do the heimlich on people, but didn't know how I could do it to him, so I pointed the back of my foot toward the bottom front of his chest, below where I assumed whatever he'd swallowed was stuck and gave him a fairly strong blow. Out popped a large bone. That dog would eat anything, one day he decided to eat the toilet bowl brush. Needless to say, I was a bit startled when I saw my dog with things sticking out of his teeth, I grapped a pair of pliers and got them out.
     
  9. Dec 2, 2011 #8

    rhody

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    My story parallels yours Ivan, except I was 11 instead of 13. I had just taken lifesaving and CPR training about 6 months before the incident. It was July, a hot evening, everyone where I lived knew everyone and always left their doors open especially on hot days, it must have been before dinner because my parents weren't home and all of a sudden I heard screaming across the street. I knew an elderly couple lived there, but did not know them really well. The husband had had a heart attack was was lying on the floor, and the wife has called for help. I was shocked, but I did the best I could with chest compressions and mouth to mouth. To this day I can still remember the smell of his breath, weird, huh. I worked on him until the fire dept with rescue arrived. Unfortunately, he did not make it. It was my first real confrontation with death, and like everyone who experiences it, will never forget the impressions that it burns into your memory.

    Rhody...
     
  10. Dec 2, 2011 #9

    Evo

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    Ewww. More!
     
  11. Dec 2, 2011 #10

    dlgoff

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    More? Stories or graphics? Before the graphics, if you really want know, there was the time a motorcyclist lost it on a oncoming curve in front of me. He was okay, but still scary. Then there was the Porch that rolled through a fence on an incoming curve. I was there while the wheel of the up-down cars wheels were still spinning. I made sure he was okay before releasing his seat belt. When he got out, he kicked the can and said "Oh sh.t, not another one."
     
  12. Dec 2, 2011 #11

    Ivan Seeking

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    Not quite a 911 story but something I can't help but think about once in awhile. While I don't have any regrets in that I didn't make a mistake or miss anything obvious, I still feel badly about this when I think about it. Back in 2008 I was on a job in Sacramento. The day was done and I had gone back to my hotel, which was just a few blocks from the plant. I had run across the street to grab dinner and was on my way back when a I saw a tractor-trailer parked outside of my hotel. Inside the cab I could see the driver, who had a funny look on his face. I noticed as I walked right in front of the truck, but barely thought twice about it. The next morning I learned that he was a driver for the plant where I was working. He had a heart attack and died in his truck right there. Apparently I actually saw him having the heart attack. But I had no idea he was in trouble. I remember him looking confused but nothing more. A real heartbreaker, if only I had realized he needed help.
     
  13. Dec 2, 2011 #12

    Ivan Seeking

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    How is it that you saw all of this? What do you do?
     
  14. Dec 2, 2011 #13

    dlgoff

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    Don't blame yourself for not knowing what was going on. A friend of mine had a man run out into the street in front of his car and fell right there in front of him. He gave the man mouth-to-mouth and couldn't get a response. Come to find out, he had choked on something and my friend had only made it worse by lodging the material deeper into his airway. The man ended up with brain damage. Now that would be something I would have trouble thinking about.
     
  15. Dec 2, 2011 #14

    dlgoff

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    I don't know. Just unlucky I guess. Maybe it's my fate to pass it on to you.
     
  16. Dec 2, 2011 #15

    Ivan Seeking

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    Ah, I thought maybe you had worked as some kind of emergency responder.

    Just living in and driving around LA is enough to see some of this sort of thing. Back when I covered the entire LA basin for mobile CTs, I used to see a serious accident at least once a week. I probably called or had someone call 911 as "likely first on the scene" at least half a dozen times over a period of about as many years. [No cell phones back then but I had radio communications]. And I was very nearly in a serious accident a fair number of times - no fault of mine, just the odds I guess.

    Once I was driving on the Long Beach Fwy North, on the inner-most lane, and curving to the left [at night], when some sort of high-performance sports car came at me from the other direction in my lane - it was a near high-speed, head-on collision. I saw his headlights and yanked the wheel but only got a glimpse as he passed. Luckily the lane next to me was clear. CRAZY!
     
  17. Dec 2, 2011 #16

    dlgoff

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    I'm really glad you are still with us and I'm not the only one to relive these experiences. Makes us realize (or teaches us) about the reality of life.
     
  18. Dec 2, 2011 #17

    Ivan Seeking

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    No kidding! Potentially your entire life can be determined by what happens, or how you react, in less than half a second.
     
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