Thursday, September 24, 2009

Seriously? You've got to be kidding me!

Sometimes there are things just so unbelievable that you can't imaging they'd be real but also can't imagine who could make it up!

*A man robs a store and takes off in his "get-away car"...that happens to have HIS 8 month old child in the backseat. Seriously? Good thing you risked your childs life for that pack of beer and cigarettes! (or whatever he stole...)

*A lady calls 911 and asks us to arrest her because she doesn't have any food in her dorm and doesn't want to go grocery shopping. So if she could just go to jail she could eat without having to go all the way to the store. Seriously? You would go to jail rather than drive a few blocks up the road to the grocery store? She has the money...just no desire to shop apparently.

*A guy (probably a student) calls me on a line that does not have caller-ID. He tells me (screams at me) that he needs an officer. I ask him where and he says "You eff'ing know where! Just send them!" and hangs up. A few minutes later I get a call from a guy saying there is a guy (presumably the first guy) standing in a hallway (he tells us which one) screaming. Officers go down and don't find anyone except the 2nd caller who was the complainant. After questioning him for a few minutes he tells the officers that he made both phone calls. He wanted to see how we would handle a difficult caller on the phone versus a non-difficult complaint caller. It was experiment he wanted to do...just for fun. Seriously? This guy (#1 and #2) needs to get a life!

*A kid takes off running from officers. When they finally catch up to him and tackle him to the ground (they ALWAYS catch up) they ask him why he ran. He said he always wanted to know if he could outrun an officer and now seemed like the perfect time to find out. Guess he learned that he needs a little more practice on the track. Seriously? Why does it matter if you can outrun an officer? Do you want to see if you can outspray a firefighter? Is it a fascination or a disease?

*A guy calls me on the non-emergency line and is very upset. He won't tell me who he is or what he wants other than he wants to know where his kid is. He decides I'm keeping the information from him because I'm a girl. He then feels the need to ask me 3 times during the converstation if I am a girl. Way to clarify man....I'd hate for you to have to be mean to me for no reason! He then tells me he hates living in "Screw-tah Utah". He said "That's right...I said screw. I know that's a big bad word around this place!" He then told me he was so flipping mad and said "That's right...screw and flip...what ya going to do know, huh girl?" Seriously? Way to offend me man...you said Screw-tah instead of Utah...what am I going to do now? I've lost all my faith!

At least I can't complain about getting bored at work. No 2 days will EVER be the same. It's keeps things exciting...or something like that! :)

Break Time

So I've had some time off at work and school, which has led to a break from blogging...at least on this blog. I took time off work so I could really focus on school and spend my time doing what I needed to academically and physically to finish first block of POST. I then started working a little again and have a break from school until Jan 2010 when I start the second block. I am finally now back to working pretty much full time hours, so hopefully there will be more frequent posting by me. Hopefully...we'll see... ;P

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Hands and knees...

Hands and knees...that is where I spent a HUGE portion of Saturday at school. We were learning about evidence. So to help us learn about evidence, we searched for evidence. We went outside and lined up in one long line. We then got down on our hands and knees, shoulder to shoulder with the person next to us, and crawled across several fields several times. We were looking for any type of evidence. The first time I didn't find much. The second time I found a post-it note with numbers on it. Then I found a key chain with a key. When we found something we would stand up right next to it, put our hat over it to "preserve" it, and then wait while the line went on without us. Our instructor had planted evidence for our searches, including $10 in change and several other things. It was also interesting to see what we found that had nothing to do with class...like my post-it, a ribbon, feathers, foot prints etc.

After our first searches we went back inside for some more book work. The worst part?!? We were SOAKING WET!! From our knees to our ankles we were wet from crawling on the grass. After some more book work we went back outside to a field. We then stood shoulder to shoulder again and walked through weeds up to our chests looking for a "package". Our instructor gave us the following scenario:

"You are dispatched to this field on a suspicious incident. A neighbor called 911 saying she saw a female walk into the field with a package and then a few minutes later walk back out without the package. The female then got into a vehicle and drove off."

Do we have a crime? What kind of search are we going to do in this humungous field? Should we search? What kind of resources do we need? We had to think about all of these things.

We decided to do a strip search (not as bad as it sounds) where we all walk in a line to cover area. We were going to go out to a tree and re-group. As we were walking through mud and dirt and weeds we found our "package". We found a baby doll wrapped up in a blanket. We then met as a group with our instructor and answered the questions I listed above...now we had a crime, we needed medical etc.

It was really an interesting and fun class. I came out wet and muddy and dusty with my shoes un-shined, but it was good and I really appreciated the things that I learned!! And it turned out to be quite a fun day in class. I always love hands on! :)

Sunday, August 2, 2009

Disclaimer

***The last 2 posts I copied off my personal blog to jump start my police academy stories. Sorry to those of you who read both blogs.

Some excitement!

Today was such an exciting day at school! I have loved all of school, but the first part of this block has been full of laws and codes. It's been very interesting and I've loved it, but it was alot of book work. We are finally done with the laws though...at least the book learning of laws. And we've had some good classes since then.

We had a communications class which is basically talking on a radio. I thought it was funny because my whole class loved it and was fascinated, but it's what I do every day at work. We also have done leadership classes which were good and full of awesome information. Last week we did conflict resolution...learning to talk to people and "talk people down" from excited or angry situations. We even "conducted" our first fake traffic stop on our instructor and had to go through the whole thing...asking for drivers license and registration, dealing with his attitude etc. That was an awesome class and I did amazingly well. I even impressed some of the guys in class. They thought I was so good but really I spend all day at work communicating and so it comes kind of naturally to me.

And today we did evidence collection and crime scene preservation. We seriously had so much fun. Not only was the instructor way cool, but he was a good teacher and easy to listen to. We dusted and lifted fingerprints, looked for hairs and fibers, made impressions of shoe prints with clay and learned how to glue fingerprints. It was alot of information, but so much fun. The fiber optic laser we used to look for hair and fibers costs $75,000 and is seriously one of the coolest things I've seen. I never thought I'd be that into crime scene or evidence, but after class today I have a new appreciation for it and a new appreciation for those who gather/preserve it.

Still going strong!

Academy is going great! I have loved everything about it. I was thinking tonight that there really hasn't been any night where I've come home and thought "that was a waste of time" or "that was so stupid"! I've taken several classes in college and I can guarantee that I've come home many times saying just those things. I just LOVE class. I am so excited that I decided to finally do Police Academy and I am loving every second of it. Even the running, which I'm still kind of struggling with, is worth it. I have amazing people in my class. I have already made new friends who I am sure I will be friends with forever (or at least for a very long time). I have learned new things about Law Enforcement, about people and most importantly about myself. Life is good and I am SO VERY HAPPY with my career/education choice!

Neglected

I know this blog has been neglected. I've been so busy with Police Academy 6 days a week and work in between that I haven't been too focused on blogging. I apologize though. I started this blog to share some of what I do with all of you, and still have the desire to do that. I've debated about whether or not to include my academy stories in this blog. Even though they aren't exactly work related, they are Law Enforcement related. So even though I've gone back and forth, I think I am going to include academy stories. At least it will give me something to post while I'm not working full time!

Sad, sad situation

This is a sad situation that happened in Orem. I have to say I'm amazed at the men and women in Law Enforcement (officers, victim advocates, firefighters, paramedics, dispatchers etc) who respond to these types of calls and deal with them. My dad responded on a similar call with the ambulance once and I saw how it affected him. These are tough calls for everyone!

My thoughts and prayers are with the family as well as they deal with their grief. What a tragic accident. Please let us all use this as a reminder to ALWAYS watch for children and be safe when we're behind the wheel.

Funny Joke

A policeman and fireman both go into the bathroom. After using the urinal the fireman goes to the sink and washes his hands while the policeman finishes and leaves the bathroom. The fireman is disgusted and approaches the policeman. In a disgusted voice the fireman says "In the fire academy they taught us to wash our hands after using the restroom." The policeman calmly looks up at the fireman and says "In the police academy they taught us not to pee on our hands!"

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

It's been awhile!

I am so far behind! I took some time off work and have had a sporatic schedule for awhile now. Not much is new at work. Naked people, angry people in jail, people beating each other up etc etc. It's the same stuff just different day. And it doesn't matter what day, what time, or what agency, people are always doing something that they shouldn't!

I did help with a swat training last week that was kind of cool. They did an active gunman training at UVU with several agencies and they asked that 2 Orem dispatchers come to handle the communications side. Myself and another dispatcher took the over time and it was a good experience. It was definitely hectic with just 2 of us handling police and fire radio, but it was a good experience for me. We had a really good time and it was interesting to hear what was going on. The scenario was that several gunmen were in the school. They had hostages and explosives and the whole enchilada. They even used blanks so that it sounded like gunshots and smelled like gun poweder. They tried to make it as real as possible. They had a few different swat teams, and officers from pretty much every agency in Utah County as well as from Juab county and Nephi. It was very fun and I'm glad I was able to participate.

I'll try to post more often on this blog. I appreciate all of you who read this! And I'm still looking for anyone who wants to contribute. Just let me know and I'll add you. We'd love to hear your stories and thoughts!

Saturday, May 9, 2009

Carbon Monoxide? I don't think so...

I took a 911 call tonight from an adult female who was babysitting 3 small children. She called 911 saying that her and the children were feeling nauseated, dizzy, confused, weak etc. She told me right at the beginning of the call that she thought they had carbon monoxide poisoning. I put a carbon monoxide call in and we started the fire department her way.

As I was taking the call, I followed pretty well along the way of carbon monoxide poisoning. I had her take all of the children outside of the home and away from the house. I had them all try to take slow deep breathis. I kept her on the phone and gathered as much information as possible. Right at the very end of the call I decided to ask her if the children looked like their cheeks were red and/or splotchy. That is a common side affect of carbon monoxide poisoning. She said it was dark outside so she took one of the children over by a light to look at them and tell me what she saw. I asked her if they looked red at all and she said "I have them in the light and they look red, but we were out in the sun all day and we are all pretty sunburned." Right after she said that she told me the officer arrived and I disconnected the phone call.

Ok...anyone thinking what I'm thinking? I love that people are aware of how they're feeling. Sometimes being "paranoid" pays off. People who notice more than 1 occupant of a home suffering from some type of ailment often times turn out to be because there really is a problem. But think about it... 4 people all feeling sick to their stomachs. They all have headaches. They are all tired and a little weak. They are all sunburned. Anyone thinking heat stroke? Well, sure enough the fire department arrives on scene and takes some tests and there is no carbon monoxide! They all spent some extra time out in the sun today running around and now they're paying for it. But bless that babysitters heart for being right on top of things. ;D

Who am I?

I am the voice that calms the mother into breathing life back into her infant son.
I am the invisible hand that holds and comforts the elderly man who woke up this morning to find his wife of 50 years passed away during the night.
I am the friend who talks the disgruntled teenager out of ending her own life.
I sent help when you had your first automobile accident.
I am the one who tries to obtain the information from callers to ensure that the scene is safe for those I dispatch to emergencies - all the while anticipating the worst and hoping for the best.
I am the psychologist who readily adapts my language and tone of voice to serve the needs of my callers with compassion and understanding.
I am the ears that listen to the needs of all those I serve.
I have heard the screams of faceless people I never will meet nor forget.
I have cried at the atrocities of mankind and rejoiced at the miracles of life.
I was there, though unseen my my comrades in the field during the most trying emergencies.
I have tried to visualize the scene to coincide with the voices I heard.
I usually am not privy to the outcome of a call, and so I wonder...
I am the one who works weekends, strange shifts and holidays.
Children do not say they want my job when they grow up. Yet, I am at this vocation by choice.
Those I help do not call back to say thank you.
Still there is comfort in the challenge, integrity, and purpose of my employment.
I am thankful to provide such a meaningful service.
I am a mother, father, sister, brother, son or daughter.
I am where you need me and still here when you don't.
My office is never empty, and the work here is never done.
I am always on call.
The training is strenuous, demanding and endless.
No two days at work are ever the same.
Who am I?
I am an Emergency 9-1-1 Dispatcher.

Friday, May 1, 2009

Help Wanted!

Would you like to be a contributor to this blog? I'd love the company! If you are in law enforcement (police, fire, dispatch, etc) simply email me at fire_princess4@hotmail.com and I'll add you on. I'd love for you to share your law enforcement stories here along with mine!

It might be a while

I'm sorry it's been awhile since I've posted. I've been trying to be good about posting regularly but I've been slacking. And now I have alot of personal/family stuff going on in my life that may keep my from blogging on a regular basis for a little while. I don't even go to work again for about a week and a half. I'll try to think of something good to post though and try to keep up. Thank you all for reading this blog. I promise that once I start Police Academy I will have alot to post about...so that's something to look forward to! :P

Sunday, April 12, 2009

National Telecommunicators Week

This week (starting today...Easter) is National Telecommunicators week. I feel like sometimes we are way under appreciated, so it's nice to have a week to celebrate and appreciate what we do. The Administration at our department is always appreciative of what we do. They recognize the job we do is difficult and they let us know how grateful they are that we do it.

We also got a "thank you" from Lindon (who we also dispatch for) in the way of a gift. They gave us each a cool water bottle and a bag of treats. It was so thoughtful. I appreciate the small gestures that says people care and recognize what we're doing. That's how I felt when I got that give.

The two post below were sent out by a coworker of mine in honor of National Telecommunicators week. I thought they were pretty funny (and so true) so I decided to share them. I hope you enjoy. I also hope that if you know a 911 dispatcher that you will thank them this week for the job they do. We often go unrecognized and underappreciated. We do all the work with none of the glory, and we're happy to do it. But thank a dispatcher if you know one. I know it would make them feel good!

Things you'd love to say to the public but can't...

THINGS YOU'D LOVE TO SAY TO THE PUBLIC BUT CAN'T...

**And your crybaby, whiny opinion would be...?

**Do I sound like a people person?

**This isn't a Comm Center... it's Hell with fluorescent lighting.

**I pretend to work, they pretend to pay me.

**Sarcasm is just one more customer service benefit we offer.

**You.. off my planet!

**Does your train of thought have a caboose?

**Did the aliens forget to remove your anal probe?

**And what law school did you graduate from, Matlock?

**I'm okay because the voices tell me so.

**Am I getting smart with you? No, I'll keep it on your level.

**And which one of the Seven Dwarfs are you?

**I don't have an attitude problem. You have a perception problem.

**I'd explain it to you, but I'm afraid your brain would explode.

**I'm sorry you got a speeding ticket. You feel you don't deserve it? What, did the officer interrupt your qualifying lap?

**There are two things on Earth that are universal: hydrogen and stupidity. You don't look like an atomic weapon, so that leaves us with one alternative...

**Errors have been made. Others will be blamed.

**Do they ever shut up on your planet?

**I'm trying to imagine you with a personality.

**How many times do I have to flush before you go away?

**Earth is full. Go home.

**Is it time for your medication or mine?

**Aw, did I step on your poor little bitty ego?

**Don't start with me!

**You won't win.

**WARNING: I have an attitude and I know how to use it.

**When I want your opinion, I'll give it to you.

**Sorry if I sounded interested... I'm not!

**And your point is?

**You have the right to remain silent, so please shut up.

**Don't upset me! I'm running out of places to hide the bodies.

You might be a dispatcher if...

You Might Be a Dispatcher If...

**You can carry on more than 4 conversations simultaneously!

**You have a bladder capacity of a tanker!

**You can resume a conversation with co-workers 4 hours later, in mid-sentence and everyone knows that you are talking about!

**You have a long term telephonic relationship with one or more paranoid schizophrenic PTSD
suffering relatives of a public official.

**You have ever had to explain to a college educated, gainfully employed, tax paying property owner that: His/her child's lack of interest in vegetables was not a police matter!

**You have ever muttered the phrase: "They let him carry a GUN?"

**You find yourself typing "height" and "weight" instead of "width" and "height" when adding dimensions to the HTML "IMG SRC" tags on your web-site.

**You answer your home phone "9-1-1, what is your emergency?"

**You spend more on fast food than utilities.

**You see nothing wrong with eating a Taco Bell Grande Meal or pizza at 3 a.m

**You consider coffee an indispensable work tool (especially on graveyards).

**You answer your home phone "dispatch".

**You answer dispatch phone "hell" instead of "hello".

**The only thing that gets your adrenaline going is the walk to and from your car.

**You find humor in other people's misery.

**You're only happy if you have something to complain about.

**You consider patience a weakness, not a virtue.

**Your idea of a good night involves someone burning a house down, getting shot, chased or dismembered.

**You have forgotten what it is like to actually eat a warm meal.

**Your dog doesn't recognize you and the kids think you're just the person who drops by every now and then to bring groceries and do the laundry.

**You think it's funny when a would-be suicide gets bored waiting for the gas from the stove to do it's thing and lights a cigarette to pass the time resulting in an explosion that leaves her neighbors homeless but she still survives.

**You truly believe stupidity should be painful.

**Dinner consist of a 2 liter bottle of soda and whatever you can scrounge out of the vending machine.

**Antacid tablets, or better known as dispatcher candy, become your regular desert.

**You read newspaper accounts of a major incident that occurred during your shift and can point
out all the incorrect information...and then laugh about it.

**Family members comment about how nice you "used" to be before you started this job.

**You believe in aerial spraying of Prozac and/or birth control over certain parts of your city.

**You have no idea what a holiday is, other than it's the day when everyone gets drunk and beats up their family members.

**You get impatient listening to people relate a story - You want "just the facts".

**You believe 90% of people can't look up a telephone number.

**You get easily bored with happy content people.

**You can talk on the phone, listen to the radio and type request into the computer at the same time without missing anything.

**You think it is funny when a "regular client" kills himself while breaking into a business.

**You can give directions to any location in your city off the top of your head.

**You can relate a 10 minute story over a 2 hour time period, after many interruptions, without losing your place.

**You refuse to allow anyone to say "have a quiet shift".

**You believe that the statement, "It sure is quiet!" will bring down the wrath of god upon you.

**You can give anyone the exact address of Parkway Crossing in your jurisdiction.

**You question the motives of anyone who makes an effort to get to know you after they learn your profession.

**You know the phone number of every restaurant or business that delivers food.

**You spell everything phonetically.

**You can only tell time on a 24 hour clock.

**You acknowledge your friends and families remarks with the time.

**You have spent time explaining to officers, firefighters or EMTs the difference between a dispatcher and a personal assistant.

**You live in fear of a full moon.

**You are on a first name basis with every crazy lunatic in your jurisdiction.

**You find no comfort in knowing that the equipment that you depend on to do your job and protect others was purchased at the lowest bid possible.

**You find yourself talking to family and friends in codes.

**You have a tendency to giggle at your friends "big" problems.

**You respond 10-4 when told to please pull around to the first window at a fast food restaurant.

**You tell cops and firefighters where to go without fear.

Saturday, April 11, 2009

Do you know the dog?!?

And one last call from last night that I thought was funny. Sadly, I was the one who was a little funny on this call. A lady called the police to complain about her neighbors dog barking. I tried to ask her if she knew the address where the dog lives, but instead I asked her "Do you know the dog?" I then had to proceed to tell her that infact it doesn't matter if she knows the dog or has a personal relationship with it. I just needed to know where it lived. I couldn't help but laugh. Imagine calling the police about a dog complaint and hearing from the 911 operator "Do you know the dog??" haha! That was when I decided it was time for me to go home! :P

Do YOU know where you live?

I got a call from a girl (probably in her 20's) and I asked her where she was. She told me at the corner of 700 W 5300 N. (I can't remember the first part of the address but the second part I know she said.) I asked her what city she was in and she said Orem. I again confirmed the address and got 700 W 5300 N. I told her she couldn't be in Orem and asked if she could be in Provo. She told me NO and she was sure she was in Orem at 700 W 5300 N, she said she had lived there here whole life and it had always been 5300 N. I told her there is no 5300 N in Orem and she told me she didn't know what to say because that is where they are at. Well I told her (in so many words) that there is no 5300 N in Orem so she was going to figure out the right address or the right city. I then hear whispering in the background followed by this:

Caller: Um...whisper, whisper...
Me: Do you know what address you're at?
Caller: Ya, it's going to be 700 W 530 N...hehe...my bad!

GRR! I hate when people think non-funny things are funny. It shouldn't be funny to you that you are 20 and don't know your address where you've lived for ALL those 20 years. It is funny to me though!

I promise, directions aren't hard!

I took another funny call last night at work. A lady was calling to report that her vehicle had just been hit and the person who hit her drove away. My caller was following the suspect. She gave me the address of where she was and said she was still following. I asked her if they were going North, South, East or West and there was silence on the other end of the phone. I think it was the first time she had ever heard those directions. She had NO idea where she was. I've had people like that before so I told her to just keep giving me addresses as she saw them so I could tell the officer. She told me they started at 1600 N State. This is how it went:

1600 N State
1140 N 980 W
1100 N 800 W
1040 N 600 W
1200 N State

...wait, 1200 N State? How did you get from 600 W to State? (For those of you who know Orem, it's not easy.) She then started giving me businesses on State street as she followed the suspect past them. We got Wendys, Maceys, a carpet business, etc. She told me she was right behind the person.

After sending our officers on a small goose chase around the North end of town (thanks to my callers directions) we finally got an officer to catch up to them. My caller said she saw the officer. I told her (as is routine) that "The officer is going to make a traffic stop on that vehicle. After he pulls it over I need you to pull over and park your car behind the officers. Do not get out of your vehicle. The officer is going to make contact first at the car he has stopped and then he will come talk to you. Do you understand?" She told me she understood, but she still seemed a little confused so I didn't hang up. Turned out to be a good thing that I didn't.

I was just about to ask her if she was out with the officer when she told me he had the wrong car pulled over. She again gave me the vehicle description and license plate. I assured her we had that very car pulled over. I asked her if she was pulled up behind the officer and she told me she couldn't see the officer. How did she know he had pulled over the "wrong car" if she couldn't even see what car he had? (I had the same question) I asked her where she was and she said 400 N State. Well the officer was at 200 N State (I don't know how she got so far behind.) I told her I was staying on the phone with her and told her to pull over behind the officer as soon as she saw him. She finally told me that she saw him and asked if she should pull over left... I told her "No, the officer is pulled over to the right and I need you to pull over and park your car RIGHT BEHIND HIM and stay in your car." (I was starting to get a little frustrated by this point. I asked her a few seconds later if she were parked behind the officer so I could hang up with her. She told me to hang on. And then I hear this:

Caller: Hi!
Male: Are you so-and-so?
Caller: Yes, who are you?
Male: I'm Officer so-and-so.
Caller: Hi!
Officer: Who are you on the phone with?
Caller: 911. Officer: Um, you can hang up now...
Caller: (to me) Ok, I think I can hang up now!

Ya, I felt like that call was never going to end. Bless her heart for trying so hard to be a good caller. She just fell through in so many ways. I couldn't help but laugh. At least she had a good attitude about the whole thing, right?

So funny!

I know things always seem funnier at night or when you haven't slept for awhile, but I think at times my job really is funny regardless of how much sleep a person has had. Tonight was one of those funny nights! I think it's good that we can find some funny things in some not-so-funny situations.

We had a serious traffic accident tonight that our medical units responded to on the highway. We had SEVERAL reports of the accident come in on 911 lines and we finally got medical units out with Highway Patrol units. It was obvious that the accident was quite serious so we quickly called an air ambulance (Life Flight) to respond to the scene. When we call Life Flight they always make contact with an officer on scene for scene and landing information. Since the accident was on the highway, UHP took the landing zone. We had advised (we thought) everyone on the scene that Life Flight was enroute and their ETA (estimated time of arrival) was less than 5 minutes. A few minutes after that we heard the chopper check on the radio with UHP and advise them that they were less than a minute out. This is what we heard:

Chopper: Who is our contact on scene?
UHP: It will be UHP unit #...
Chopper: UHP unit #..., we are less than 1 minute out
(Amidst ALOT of wind-type noise on the radio)
UHP: Life Flight confirming you are 15 minutes out?
Chopper: Um, negative. We have the scene in sight and are coming in straight at you.

It was one of those times when you can just picture the helicopter pilot wanting to say "LOOK UP! What do you mean 15 minutes? Can't you see a HUGE red helicopter coming in? And if you don't see the helicopter, can't you hear it? "

It was so funny. And the best part was that the whole time they are having their converstation I could HEAR the helicopter in the background. It's not like they sneak up on a person.

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

I will never understand

I will never understand the way people think. Why is it that we will recieve 10 calls about a dog running in traffic but only 1 about a guy standing on the side of the road bleeding? We will recieve 15 calls about a couch laying on the side of the road but only 2 about a kid walking down the sidewalk holding a gun. We can get 20 calls about a cow loose in traffic but only 1 about a guy who is handcuffed and wearing a hospital gown running down the street. We will get 15 calls about traffic accident that is not even blocking traffic and only 1 about a person who is laying on the sidewalk not moving. We will recieve 10 about a house that looks like it's on fire but only 3 about a vehicle that is burning up in a parking lot.

I know people love their dogs and cats. I understand that people take pride in their cars and have spent alot of money on them. I even understand the concern about large animals such as cattle running on a busy street. BUT WHAT ABOUT PEOPLE?!?! Are you seriously not concerned about people who may be hurt or injured? What about people holding weapons? Aren't you the least bit worried about what they're going to do with the weapon?

I will just never understand people and the way they think. *Sigh*

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

More things I've learned at work

Every time I go to work I learn something new. And what kind of person would I be if I kept that knowledge to myself? So I'm going to share it with you.

#1 If you are old enough to buy a car and drive a car and use a car...KNOW WHAT KIND OF CAR YOU DRIVE!! If you don't know the make and/or model of your own car, don't get behind the wheel!

#2 Also, I don't care what the "technical" color of your car is. I want red, blue, green, purple, white, tan. Don't tell me burgandy or amethist or champagne. I don't care! Think about the rainbow, add white, tan and black and choose from those colors only!

#3 Do not call 911 and tell me there is a problem and then say "never mind!" If you call me, you are getting an officer. Bottom line.

#4 If your phone just "accidentally" calls 911, please just stay on the line and tell me it was an accident. And if you don't stay on the line and I end up calling you back, don't yell at me for calling you and tell me your phone didn't call. How do you think I got your phone number? I didn't just make it up or pick one out of the phone book, regardless of what you think!

#5 If you lock your keys in your car, or your car gets broken into, or you're a victim of any other type of crime, call the police. YOURSELF! Don't have your boyfriend/girlfriend call and then stand in the background and tell them everything. If you're the one with all of the answers, make the call yourself. It will save us both alot of time!

#6 If you are the victim of a crime, don't wait 3 days and then decide to call at 1100 on a Friday night and then get mad because the officers are busy and take a little while to get to your car. If you would have called on Tuesday afternoon when your car was damaged, there is a good chance that you would have had a lot shorter wait than on a Friday night.

#7 If you make a police report, don't change it 5 times. It doesn't make you look good...it makes you look like a suspect. And don't tell me one story on the phone and then tell the officer a totally different story when he shows up. It doesn't save any time and it's just going to make me mad for you making me look stupid.

#8 If you want sympathy, don't call me at 1100 at night and cry to me because your neighbors are being loud and you can't sleep. I understand it might be frustrating, but you aren't going to get the sympathy you want from me for still being awake...I have alot of hours left at work talking to people just like you.

#9 I am on your side. I'm not out to get you. But you better believe that if you're rude to me on the phone, I'm going to check you for warrants. It's my right as a dispatcher to check every single person we are going to have contact with, and if you're rude to me, you moved yourself to the top of the list! Your fault, not mine!

#10 If you don't speak english, that is your choice. I'm not going to judge you. But don't call me and ask if I speak spanish (or whatever language you speak) and then get mad at me for not speaking a language that isn't primary in our country. AND, don't ask me if I speak spanish and then when I say no, speak to me in the best english I've ever heard. If you speak english, speak it from the beginning!

What's been going on.

Oh my gosh...I have been such a slacker! I haven't posted for awhile, and last time it was a post I copied off my personal blog. I really try to be good. But of course I've been working, so of course stuff has happened. Here are some of the things going on lately.

***DUMP FIRE***
I'm serious, this could not have smelled good! :P We got a report of a fire alarm. We were trying to call into the business (a normal routine on fire alarms) and I received a 911 call from a fisherman at Utah Lake (who would fish in there is for another time...) and he said he could see flames. I asked him where and he said at the dump. We got the fire department and police officers sent over and sure enough, the dump was on fire. Something funny happened when the officer arrived. We had already told him about the fisherman seeing flames, but the officer gets on scene and said there was no smoke or flames showing. We kind of sat there for a second not quite knowing what to say. Two different people had seen and reported two different things. And then we hear this "Uh, dispatch, I just went around to the other side of the building, and there are flames visible!!! They're coming from the building and they're 15 feet tall!!!" I just had a little laugh to myself. He felt a little foolish too. The lesson he learned was look all the way around the building before giving a scene size up. :D

***MY KITE, MY KITE***
I got to work the other day and sat down ready to face the day. I was on phones which I was happy about. I just wanted to take phone calls and do my job. I picked up the very first phone that rang after I sat down. It was a 911. There was a lady on the phone and we had the following conversation.
Me: 911, what city please?
Caller: Orem.
Me: This is Orem, how can I help you?
Caller: I have a problem. We were at the park and our kite got stuck in the tree. And it's not like a dollar store kite. It was like a nice, stitched kite. What can the police department do for me?
Me: Can you hold on one second please?
At this point I put the call on hold. I always expect calls like this at work, but for some reason I wasn't expecting in as the first call of the day or expecting it over 911. I had no words. I did eventually pick up the phone and tell them that there was nothing the police could do. They would need to find a different way to get the kite down. She seemed to not be able to believe that I wasn't going to send the fire engine to her lights and sirens to get the kite out of the tree. *Sigh* Some people.

Oh, what else has happened?

***911***
We had two kind of annoying 911 stories that happened on the same day and right around the same time. First of all we got a 911 call from a man at a pay phone. He wanted the address for an apartment complex in Provo. Now usually I am more than happy to give an address to someone but NOT over 911. I explained over and over that I couldn't do it and that we were holding up a 911 line. They told me they didn't have change to call a different number. I told them to find an open business in the area and ask to use the phone, and they finally agreed and hung up. Well, after TWO more calls from the same person asking the same thing on 911 lines, he finally called back on a non-emergency line. Non-emergency was call number four. So they were given the address and the Provo Police number (for the 4th time) in case the needed to call again. I thought for sure they were done calling, until 911 rang and it was them again. I didn't know what to think, but I was getting annoyed! We told the guy not to call 911 again unless it was an emergency. He finally listened! Now, now, it's not that exciting. He listened "technically" in that he didn't call, but he had the lady he was with call 911. They didn't have money and now wanted a ride to Provo. Finally we had enough and sent an officer down to the gas station they were at to talk to them. You can be arrested for abusing 911, and I didn't necessarily expect that to happen, but they needed to stop. So the officers made contact and made them stop. I honestly had my doubts even after the officers talked to them, but they finally did stop!

The other 911 call we had bugged me as well! I answered 911 (I answered alot of phones that night for not being on phones. The 911 phones person was busy with fire traffic so we took her phones.) I heard yelling immediately on the phone, and then we had the following conversation.
Me: 911 what's the address of your emergency?
Caller: address given
Me: Ok, what's the problem there?
Caller: There has been an altercation!
Me: Ok, what exactly is going on?
Caller: (amidst screaming) Oh, never mind, never mind. click.
The phone was disconnected. Let me tell you a little tidbit of information. If you want to make a dispatcher mad, call 911 and then hang up after you've said there was a problem and amidst yelling. It makes me so angry! I ended up calling back and had to explain the same thing over and over. The caller said everything was fine now. I told him that he had called 911 saying there was an altercation so whether he wanted or not, the police were coming so he may as well give me the information I was asking. He finally agreed and said he had been punched and was bleeding and his brother did it and may be drunk etc, etc, etc. While I'm talking to him I hear a girl in the background saying over and over "Just hang up! We don't want the police. Hang up!" The guy finally told me to talk to his mom and gave that lady the phone. I then started all over explaining to her that when someone calls the police and says that someone has been punched, the police are going to come. If everything is fine then the officers will clear right away, but they have to see it for themselves. They can't just take someones word for it. If they take someone word for it and there is a problem then that responsibility lies with us. The lady just would not give up trying to get me to cancel and I just kept telling her why we were coming. I figured that us talking about anything at least kept her on the phone. Finally the police showed up and I heard over the phone (imagine the most spiteful voice you can think of) "There are two police officers here. And just so you know, I DO RESENT YOU FOR THIS." Click. Let me tell you, I'm shaking in my boots! :P

***IN THE MIDDLE***
Tonight we were searching for a suspect. We were helping the detective and we kept getting small parts of information. We got that the suspect vehicle was red. Then we heard it was a Mazda. Then they added that it might be a Mitsubishi. So there are four dispatchers and we're all searching the best way we can but still wanted more information if it were possible. Finally the detective told us that the year of the vehicle was a middle year. Oh, ok....wait, what is a middle year? I honestly had no idea. We were wondering if it was middle of the officers life or middle of the 2000's or middle of what? I finally had to ask him. I got on the radio and asked the officer "Can you advise what a middle year vehicle is?" There was kind of a silence for a second and then he replied "Not old, but not new." Um, hello, I think I liked the middle year answer better. It was so funny. He finally called in later and said he had asked a 17 year old how old the vehicle was. She said she didn't know and he asked her if it was old or new and she said it was a middle year. He didn't know what it meant either. But he probably could have come up with a better answer for the radio, don't you think? ;D

And that's just some of what has been happening lately. I'm sure there is more but it's late (well early) and I'm tired so I'm calling it a night. Hope you enjoyed!

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Best of friends...

I posted this on my other blog, but thought it was very fitting for this one too. So my apologies to those of you who read both.

I don't think that people need to be best of friends. I don't care really if people even like each other. But why, oh why can't people just learn to get along? I feel like I'm a babysitter more often than a dispatcher. I never knew that people would call the police for every minor little thing. Seriously people, do you need your hand held just to live your life? Are you not adult enough to solve your own problems?

Why is it that you can't just ask your neighbor to turn their music down? Why can't you tell your neighbor that their dog is keeping you awake night after night? Why can't you go get your mail from your ex-husbands house alone? He's never been violent and you have a friend with you, but you can't do it alone? Really? Why can't you just ignore someone who cut you off in traffic and go on with your day? Do you really think it's the end of the world that a few leaves are falling out of a truck or that there is a puddle on a sidewalk? Don't get me started on people who think it's the end of the world that a truck in front of them is putting out a little black smoke from their exhaust pipe. I understand it might be upsetting that your house got hit by 1 egg, but you really feel the need to call the police and ask them to fingerprint the egg shell? You can't just throw it away? And, do you really think you know every person who should be in your neighborhood at every hour of the day? You don't think that the person who walked by your house could just be out for a walk or visiting a neighbor and not casing your house for burglary?

In case you can't tell, it's been a long week. Not busy, but very draining! I don't understand why people can't just be a contributing factor to the community without being a vigilante. People need to learn to get along. People need to learn to deal with minor things alone. People need to learn that the police (and dispatchers) aren't here to hold your hand as you go through life. We're here to help in case of emergency. That's it! I don't need any more friends. I have enough already. Cut the small talk, cut the back-biting, cut the whining, and DEAL WITH LIFE!. We all have problems, so deal with it. I'm happy to help when help is needed, but I think we need have a talk about necessity vs NOT! Stop holding grudges, stop getting offended and just move on. I promise, it will be ok!

(P.S. I feel much better now that I've vented! =D Just thought I'd share!)

Thursday, March 12, 2009

A crash in Orem

There was a serious car accident in Orem the other day. Subjects from both vehicles had to be extricated and they are in critical condition according to ksl. Check out the following pictures, and for the full story click here and here.

Sunday, March 1, 2009

Things I've learned at work lately...

The following things I have learned at work the past few weeks, and I have found them to be so important that I feel I should pass them on so you too can learn from them.

#1 When you call in a report to the police, it doesn't matter whether you talk calmly or scream...the response is going to be the same. So save us all the trouble (and save our eardrums) and just don't yell!

#2 Just because you live next door to one of our police officers doesn't mean that you locking your keys in your car is going to be more important than a traffic accident or a medical emergency or anything else. I understand the officer is your friend and neighbor, but he (or she) doesn't dictate what is an emergency. You can't have special treatment just because a police officer moved in next door to you. I'm sorry.

#3 Don't crash your personal car into a police car. It only makes the officer angry and our goal is to keep the officers happy! (I did not crash my car into an officer, don't worry.)

#4 If you're going to be a bad guy (or girl) and want to remain 'sleuth', don't post your whole life on facebook. You make it ridiculously easy for people to track you down!

#5 If you call something into the police department and we tell you that we'll send an officer, WE WILL SEND AN OFFICER! Don't call back 3 times wondering where we are. We're coming as fast as possible. Just because your call seems like an emergency to you (and it may be important) doesn't mean that there isn't something more important in the city requiring the officers first. Please be patient. It's a virtue, you know?!?

#6 If you want dispatchers to like you, be nice to us when you call in. I'm not calling you...you are calling me asking for help. I'm doing the best I can to help you with your request. Just show a little respect. I know you're scared/frustrated/worried/excited etc...but still be nice!

#7 When I say "What's the address of your emergency?" THAT'S ALL I WANT TO KNOW RIGHT THEN!! I know you have a whole story you want to tell me, and I'll get there eventually, but one thing at a time!

#8 When I ask you questions, I assure you that it's not to bug you. Everything I ask is needed for a reason. Please just answer the questions. The quicker you answer my questions, the quicker you get an officer.

#9 If an officer is trying to do a traffic stop on you or handcuff you or do anything else 'police related'...PLEASE don't call dispatch asking to talk to the one officer in our department you think you are friends with. Just do what the officer on scene is asking you to do, and worry about the rest later. It's just going to make the officers angry if you ignore them and call me, and trust me, there is a good chance I don't want to talk to you in that situation! :D

#10 Even though sometimes police officers have a bad repuation, most of them do in fact know what they are talking about. Don't call dispatch to ask us if the things the officer told you is true. All that's going to get you is another conversation with the exact same officer, and I can almost guarantee that by that point he won't be as pleasant as he first was. Trust me! (And trust them!!)

Thursday, February 26, 2009

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Monday, February 16, 2009

Keeping up

I know I've slacked a little at keeping this blog up-to-date. I hope you didn't give up checking in because it was just temporary. I've added a few calls to this blog the last few days and promise to put alot more effort into keeping it updated. We take enough calls every shift that I should be able to find something to post about. Even if I wasn't directly involved, I'll try to post at least 1 story a week. We'll say one for now until I see how keeping up with that goal goes! :D

Hey...Are you conscious?

I had to laugh tonight when I took a 911 call. Elderly people always make me chuckle. First of all, they always feel bad for calling 911. They think they're inconveniencing us. I don't feel bad, it's our job! I had a quite funny conversation today with an elderly female today (a lady in her 80's) and I can't help but share it.

A lady called 911 to tell me that she thought her husband was having a heart attack. No problem for me, I take those kind of calls all day long. So I got her address and telephone number and continued on with my questioning...

"Me: Is this a home or an apartment?
Caller: apartment
Me: Is there a building letter or #?
Caller: #15
Me: What's the problem?
Caller: I think my husband us having a heart attack!
Me: How old is your husband?
Caller: 82
Me: Where is his pain?
Caller: In his chest, well his whole body, well I don't know if he has pain. (She was confused and scared)
Me: Is he breathing?
Caller: Yes
Me: Is he conscious?"

(This is where it gets interesting and a little funny!)

"Me: Is he conscious?
Caller: Milford, are you conscious? Are you conscious Milford? They need to know if you're conscious!"

*Side note for all you who may not be as logical as some. If you are asking a person if they're conscious and they give any type of verbal response, the answer is Yes! They're conscious! Maybe not 'with it' but conscious none-the-less!

"Me: Is that him I hear talking?
Caller: Yes
Me: Ok, so that means he's conscious. (That is a statement not a question.)
Caller: I don't know if he's conscious. He won't tell me. He just keeps saying he needs an ambulance! Milford...ARE YOU CONSCIOUS? Hey, are you conscious?"

I had to laugh! (Not on the phone, but just to myself.) She was so funny. She really was just so concerned. Oh, and she was so hard of hearing so I had to yell the same thing over and over for her to understand what I was saying.

And then she topped off the call with such an old-lady type remark.

"Me: Is your door unlocked and porch light on?
Caller Yes. I can hear the sirens now.
Me: They should be there in just a minute. Stay on the phone with me until they're there.
Caller: I can't. My husband wants to me go wait right in the middle of the street for the ambulance. So they know where to go, you know?
Me: Don't go stand in the road! It's cold and you need to stay with Milford. The ambulance has a map so they'll find you. Stay inside with your husband. (I didn't throw in that it's not safe to stand in the middle of the street...I just let her think she was needed more inside.)
Caller: Uh, oh. OH NO! Oh my gosh!!!
Me: Ma'am, what's going on? Ma'am, is there a problem with your husband?
Caller: No. I just realized that my blouse isn't buttoned up. Oh my, I have to go!"

It was right then that she disconnected. I had to laugh. It was just so funny. First she asks her husband if he's conscious, and then she realized she didn't have her shirt buttoned up. Elderly people are always especially conservative and concerned about their decency. I hear often that they need to change out of pajamas or put on a shirt. But it's rare that a caller ask the patient if they are conscious. So funny! =D

Moral of the story: If they can answer the question "Are you conscious?" then THEY ARE CONSCIOUS!!! :P

*Names have been changed and the conversations aren't necessarily word for word.

Saturday, February 14, 2009

I've been robbed!?!

The majority of people can't differentiate 100 % between the meaning of burglary and robbery. Alot of people think they've been the victim of a robbery when in fact, they've been the victim of a burglary. Before I continue on with my story let me explain the definitions.

Burglary- the act of breaking and entering an inhabited structure (as a house) esp. at night with intent to commit a felony (as murder or larceny); also : the act of entering or remaining unlawfully (as after closing to the public) in a building with intent to commit a crime (as a felony) NOTE:The crime of burglary was originally defined under the common law to protect people, since there were other laws (as those defining larceny and trespass) that protected property. State laws have broadened the common-law crime. Entering at night is often no longer required and may be considered an aggravating factor. The building may be something other than a dwelling, such as a store or pharmacy. Some states have included vehicles under their burglary statute. There are degrees of burglary, and some of the usual aggravating factors are the presence of people and use of a deadly weapon.

Robbery- the unlawful taking away of personal property from a person by violence or by threat of violence that causes fear : larceny from the person or immediate presence of another by violence or threat of violence and with intent to steal NOTE: aggravated robbery: robbery committed with aggravating factors (as use of a weapon, infliction of bodily injury, or use of an accomplice) armed robbery: robbery committed by a person armed with a dangerous or deadly weapon simple robbery: robbery that does not involve any aggravating factors

(Definitions found here.)

Clear as mud, right? I'll try to explain. Burglary means to stay inside a dwelling or to enter a dwelling illegally with intent to commit a crime. (Dwelling could mean vehicle as well.) Robbery means to take something from a person or to take personal property by force or threat of force. Ex: You return home to find your door open and your electronics missing. You have been the victim of a burglary. You are in your house when someone enters with a gun aimed at you and takes your electronics. You have been the victim of a robbery. Becoming more clear?

I have answered alot of calls that have gone like this:

"Me: 911, what is the address of your emergency?
Caller: address given.
Me: Ok, tell me what's the problem there?
Caller: I've been robbed!!!
Me: You've been robbed? Explain to me what happened.
Caller: I came home and found my house was broken into sometime over the weekend."

Now as we've all learned, this is not in fact a robbery. This is a burglary, and still something that needs to be investigated, but not with the urgency of a robbery. I answer alot of calls that start with "I've been robbed" that end up being a burglary.

On to the rest of my story. I was at work one night and answered a call that went like this:

"Me: 911, what is the address of your emergency?
Caller: address given.
Me: Ok, tell me what's the problem there?
Caller: I've been robbed!!!
Me: You've been robbed? Explain to me what happened.
Caller: These guys came in and pepper sprayed me and then beat me up and took all my money!"

That my friends, is a robbery! A very legitimate robbery! It was handled very well and very quickly. We had officers to the location within probably less than a minute of the call being received. The victim was such a good caller. Even though he had been pepper sprayed he was still able to give me the information I needed to give to the officers. (I don't know how many of you have been pepper sprayed, but it's not easy to do anything when it's still in your face and in the few minutes following!) We got help to the victim and descriptions out to patrolling officers in such a quick manner. We don't have robbery's often, but when we do they are definitely handled the way they should be.

And yes, there is a point to all of this. Moral of the story is: When someone calls in saying "I've been robbed", it just might be true!

Weather or Not

Whether or not we're ready for it, the weather is here. And Oh Boy is it here! We have had so many weather related incidents lately, most in the form of traffic accidents. It seems like every car on the road has been involved in some sort of accident. There are days when it's snowing outside that I'm nervous to drive home because of the amount of weather related issues we have had.

I was reading online today at ksl.com about the storm that blew through this morning. It turns out that our police department isn't the only one struggling with traffic accidents due to snow. In fact, it sounds like our problems don't even start to match those of other agencies. Just a word to the wise, drive safely out on the streets. You may be a good driver, but that doesn't mean that all the other drivers are! ;)

http://www.ksl.com/index.php?nid=148&sid=5597039

Sunday, January 25, 2009

A Firefigther's Prayer

I posted the Police Officer's Prayer the other day and it made me wonder if there were one for firefighters. I was looking online and found this picture with the poem and I loved it and decided to share it too! (I also posted this on my other blog so if you read both I apologize for the duplicate posts.)

A Firefighter's Prayer

When I am called to duty, God,
Whenever flames may rage,
Give me strength to save some life,
Whatever be its age.

Help me embrace a little child
Before it is too late
Or save an older person
From the horror of that fate.

Enable me to be alert
And hear the weakest shout,
And quickly and efficiently
To put the fire out.

I want to fill my calling
And to give the best in me
To guard my every neighbor
And protect his property.

And if, according to my fate,
I am to lose my life
Please bless with your protecting
Those that I loved in life.

I have personally seen the blessing that firefighters are. I am proud to say my dad is a firefighter. He is one of the best people and best firefigher's that I know. He works with some amazing people. Please thank a firefighter if you see one. They do put their lives on the line to serve us.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

A Police Officer's Prayer

I have been thinking alot about the risk that Police Officers take every single day on the job. One day while I was thinking about it, I ran across the above picture and poem and wanted to share it.

A Police Officer's Prayer
Lord, I ask You to be with me
In a very special way
As I face the challenges
That I must face each day
Please give to me compassion
For the innocent I see
Help me to protect & serve
Those who depend on me
And when duty calls to danger
Walk closely by my side
Instill in me great courage
And be my strength, my guide
And whatever I am called to do
Always thankful I will be
That You have been the unseen guest
Walking next to me
Please just always take the time to thank a police officer next time you see them. Remember that they are putting their lives on the line to protect and serve you and me!

Monday, January 19, 2009

DUI's

I don't know what it is about this time of year, but it seems like there are so many more DUI's than normal. (DUI=Driving Under the Influence) We have had so many DUI's lately. I have worked for 3 years at the police department and I still get suprised sometimes when at 6:30 in the morning we find someone who is DUI. Whether they started drinking that morning or are still drunk from the night before, it suprises me.

The other night we had a drunk prisoner who was found DUI after wrecking his vehicle. He had the highest BAC I have ever seen in a conscious person. (BAC=Blood Alcohol Content) His BAC was .485. The highest I have ever seen in a conscious person is .410. The legal limit in Utah is .08 so needless to say he was FAR over the legal limit. Also, he's lucky he was alive. People have died from alcohol poisoning with BAC less than our prisoner was.

The fact that our prisoner was conscious, breathing, driving, walking...all amazed me. Now, don't get me wrong, he didn't do any of these things very well. He was driving and got in an accident. He was sitting down and then stood up, turned and crashed face-first on the floor. He went unconscious several times. He spent quite a bit of time getting medical help before coming back to jail and passing out on the floor.

I've noticed alot lately how many drunk people we have dealt with and other agencies have dealt with. It seems like such a huge percentage of our calls have included alcohol. I don't know if it's just becoming more prevalent, or if it's because it's been so cold outside that people are stuck inside and entertain themselves with alcohol, but it's a serious problem.

To end I thought I'd post a link to an article on KSL. I'm not saying that any of these people deserved what happened to them, but I am glad that nothing happened to an innocent, sober person.

http://www.ksl.com/index.php?nid=148&sid=5354944

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Not exciting

I know my last 2 posts weren't very exciting and weren't very law related. I haven't really been able to think of any super exciting police stories to share lately. I promise that I'll pay closer attention at work this week and find a good story to tell. We're busy all day every day and yet I still find a lack of exciting things lately. They're out there though so I'll find them soon and let you know!

Thanks for being patient with my lack of posts and for keeping up with this blog. I appreciate all of the support you have given me through the short course since this blog has been up. I promsie to make it good one of these days!

More than just a 'hero'

Everyone loves firemen (and paramedics). They are the heroes. Very rarely are people disappointed to see them. Police officers are often hated by people, or at least unappreciated, but not the firemen. All they want to do is help people. They are loved by most everybody. I know of at least 1 person though who wouldn't agree with the 'firemen are heroes philosophy'. My doctor told me the following story.

My doctors brother is an engineer for a fire company in Salt Lake County. (We'll call his brother Marc.) Marcs' company has 4 people on the engine that are all firefighters/paramedics. One night they were paged out to a female who had been stabbed. Officers arrived on scene and declared it safe for fire units to enter. The firefighters went inside and started treating the patient in the living room. The officers and suspect (who is the victims life partner) were also in the room. The suspect was not detained.

***Important side note: Marc is approx 6'5 and about 225 pounds...most of which is muscle. He's not little to say the least. The suspect is a female who is approx 120 pounds soaking wet.

As Marc and his partners were treating the patient, Marc started looking around at his surroundings. As he was watching he noticed the supsect inching her way closer to a china hutch in the room. He was trying to pay attention to his patient but was also staying alert to what was going on in the room. Within just a few seconds he saw the suspect open a drawer on the hutch, grab a knife and start charging towards the victim. Marc decided he needed to do something (especially since the officers noticed a second too late) so less than a second before the suspect would have been on top of the patient with a knife, he reacted. Marc turned, squared off with the suspect and punched her square in the face. Apparently it was one of those punches like you see on tv...where the person being punched is literally lifted off the ground and thrown backwards by the force. The officers were very grateful for Marc's quick reaction. He helped save further injury to the responders and the patient. Marc was a little annoyed, because they now had 2 patients instead of 1 because of his actions.

It turns out that the suspect decided that day that she wasn't a big fan of the 'city heroes' who came to help her out, and probably won't be for a good deal of the future. Marc also made a decision. He decided it's good he isn't an officer...he got a taste and it turned out the bite was more bitter than he expected. He learned that day that firefighters have other responsibilites than those that have made them heroes. His job is to save his patients, and that day he definately did. It also taught him (and me) that you never know what's going to happen. At any second a medical call can turn into just about anything! Just another reason to be safe out there.

Fires

I think I'm immune to thinking things are 'exciting' at work. It seems like daily routine to me now but then I get a reality check. My doctor asked me what had been exciting at work lately and I had to think about it for a minute. Then I thought of a pretty good fire I told him about, so if it's good enough for the doc then it's good enough for everyone! =D

We had an interesting and different fire the other day. We got a third party call about a fire in a shed. While the fire department and officers were on their way over, the home owner called us about the fire. Part of the way through the call she tells us the shed is full of gun poweder and ammunition. Apparently that's where her husband does all his gun stuff. Now as you all can imagine, gun powder in the middle of a fire isn't good seeing how flamable it is.

When the officers arrived on scene the advised that they heard 'shots' going off every 2-3 seconds. There was no active attack on this fire. The fire department took their precious time putting it out to make sure everyone (them, the police and the citizens) were all kept safe from the exploding shots. Gun powder in the middle of a fire is never a good idea.

We also had another fire a few days later. A family had a fire going in their fire place when all of the sudden flames and smoke started coming out the bottom of the fireplace on the outside of the house. Again, the fire department and officers responded. The problem with fires like that is that the fires stay in the walls. So there is a home now with several holes punched in the walls both inside and out. The fire was eventually put out though and it could have been alot worse. But 2 fires in 1 week is pretty rare and pretty 'exciting' if you're the firemen. It definately kept us on our toes and tied up for awhile.