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 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! ;)