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#198486 - 03/20/10 02:48 AM Preparedness To The Rescue
Desperado Offline

Registered: 11/01/08
Posts: 1530
Loc: DFW, Texas

I am sure everyone remembers (from my Canada thread) my recent change in vocations; and all the preparation I went through to leave for Canada, only to wind up in Oklahoma and Arkansas. Turns out the winter preps stood well in both states, since it was actually colder there than in Canada during that time.

I also bet some folks remember all of my First Aid preps due to the nature of the business, and the remoteness of most job locations. Seems those preps have also paid out in spades. Some times (three to be exact), all the medical help in the world could not have made a difference (if you fall 285 feet, even landing on the trauma table at Johns Hopkins won't help), but today was different.

Now that I have been transferred to my hometown, and was in my office, I had to treat and transport a co-worker/patient that fell over a three-inch gap in the sidewalk leading to our building.

As I pulled up to the office this morning, I found a crowd standing around a lady lying on the ground. Everyone had the “Deer-In-The-Headlights” look, except the patient. She was the only one at the scene doing what was to be expected…. SCREAMING!

After getting to the patient, I asked for the First Aid Kit that is required to be in our office, only to discover it was a really nice metal box affair that CANNOT BE REMOVED FROM THE WALL! Once I went to the really nice metal box, I found it EMPTY except for a few Band-Aids!!

I had someone stay with the patient, and recovered my field FAK/Medical bag from the truck and started helping her. After getting things calmed down and iced down, I immobilized the leg with a SAM splint and transported her to the local ER. (She didn’t want the ambulance ride, and really didn’t need it.)

On my return to the office, the director of the division, plus the patient’s immediate supervisor thanked me for taking action. One also commented that they really never had witnessed someone stepping in to help another like that.

In return I asked for a meeting with the division director, our local safety officer, and the heads of both HR and Safety.

After I finished my short diatribe regarding the lack of training (EVERY employee, from office worker to tower climber, is required to be CPR/AED/First Aid certified within 30 days of employment.), and the lack of adequate safety & First Aid supplies everyone was speechless. I will either be getting a new responsibility, a promotion, or fired.

Lesson learned:
That First Aid kit on the wall is probably empty, so you better be prepared yourself!
I do the things that I must, and really regret, are unfortunately necessary.


#198494 - 03/20/10 04:37 AM Re: Preparedness To The Rescue [Re: Desperado]
Newsman Offline

Registered: 01/28/10
Posts: 67
Loc: NW Arkansas
Desperado, great job stepping in and helping. And even better job stepping up to point out to management the shortcomings you identified. You helped far more than one person by going to extra mile.

Monday morning I'm going to walk up to my office FAK and open it. I wonder what I'll find inside. I always have first-aid supplies in my office, so I've always just walked past it.

I'm amazed at how often people just stand around gawking when someone's hurt. Bystanders have asked "Where did you learn that stuff." I answer "Boy Scouts."

#198503 - 03/20/10 09:05 AM Re: Preparedness To The Rescue [Re: Desperado]
scafool Offline

Registered: 12/18/08
Posts: 1534
Loc: Muskoka
I hope you pointed out what a decent lawyer would do to them if somebody was injured and their lax approach to safety made things worse.
Even with worker's comp there are still some legal responsibilities.
May set off to explore without any sense of direction or how to return.

#198507 - 03/20/10 11:53 AM Re: Preparedness To The Rescue [Re: scafool]
Desperado Offline

Registered: 11/01/08
Posts: 1530
Loc: DFW, Texas
Originally Posted By: scafool
I hope you pointed out what a decent lawyer would do to them if somebody was injured and their lax approach to safety made things worse.
Even with worker's comp there are still some legal responsibilities.

Especially since we have a huge warehouse operation in back.
I do the things that I must, and really regret, are unfortunately necessary.


#198512 - 03/20/10 01:15 PM Re: Preparedness To The Rescue [Re: Desperado]
hikermor Offline
Geezer in Chief

Registered: 08/26/06
Posts: 7411
Loc: southern Cal
Good for you!

Brings back memories. There must a million nice metal boxes across our fair land housing nothing but a few band aids. I have seen the same situation in most offices in which I worked. One thing I did (I did side duty as safety officer for a while) was to organize the kits with real equipment and then place a box of band aids and a bottle of aspirin next to the box so that the box contents would be available for more serious emergencies.

My office had a warehouse operation, and, yes, we eventually had to deal with a broken leg.

Glad to hear that your company at least has a universal first aid policy. Great idea that should be more common.
Geezer in Chief

#198519 - 03/20/10 03:49 PM Re: Preparedness To The Rescue [Re: hikermor]
Compugeek Offline

Registered: 08/09/09
Posts: 392
Loc: San Diego, CA
Good job, Desparado!

Both of the FAKs on the walls at my job are like the one you described. Discovering that was a big motivator for putting a decent FAK in my car (which is less than 30 seconds away from anywhere in the building).

Mentioning the condition of the FAKs at work to a couple of different managers had no effect, unfortunately.
Okey-dokey. What's plan B?

#198528 - 03/20/10 05:48 PM Re: Preparedness To The Rescue [Re: Desperado]
BrianEagle Offline

Registered: 02/27/10
Posts: 27
Loc: Northern Texas
Well done! That's why I carry a small FAK in my briefcase and keep a larger one in the car.

We just cannot assume that "somebody else" took care of preparations. Besides, why pass up an easy chance to be the hero for a damsel in distress? smile
Formerly known as BrianTexas. I just couldn't remember my old password and had to create a new profile.

#198538 - 03/20/10 09:36 PM Re: Preparedness To The Rescue [Re: BrianEagle]
nouseforaname Offline

Registered: 02/28/04
Posts: 76
part of my job includes tracking all of the injuries reported in our store's across North America. You would be AMAZED at the amount of ingenious ways people manage to hurt themselves on a daily basis.

dropping stuff on their feet, tripping over parking lot bumpers, lacerations from broken glass, kids falling out of shopping carts, ad nauseum.

thankfully, we're VERY safety-oriented, and our office takes it VERY seriously...unfortunately, I can't say the same for other retailers.

oh and regarding the 'bystanders' comment; it has been my experience that you absolutely CANNOT rely on others to get involved or to help out. People have been socialized - it would seem - into being 'good witnesses' - watching people bleed out or get beat into a pulp - all because they cannot or will not jump in to lend a hand.........makes me sick, really.
"It is a far, far better thing that I do, than I have ever done; it is a far, far better rest that I go to than I have ever known" - A Tale of Two Cities - Charles Dickens

#198539 - 03/20/10 09:39 PM Re: Preparedness To The Rescue [Re: BrianEagle]
bws48 Offline
Old Hand

Registered: 08/18/07
Posts: 831
Loc: Anne Arundel County, Maryland
I also have worked in many many offices where the first aid kit was an empty shell, whether it was attached to the wall or a box in the supply cabinet.

That is, except for one company. They had a huge well equipped first aid cabinet attached to the wall in the shop, and monthly a service restocked whatever had been used or had gone out of date.

I think this is really the only way to be reasonably sure that the kit will have what is needed when it is needed. Problem is getting the boss to understand that it is a cost that the company should pay.
"Better is the enemy of good enough."

#198583 - 03/21/10 05:34 PM Re: Preparedness To The Rescue [Re: bws48]
ILBob Offline
Old Hand

Registered: 02/05/10
Posts: 776
Loc: Northern IL
We are pretty well stocked for FA supplies at work, but they are not in something you can grab if you need them. Some are just stacked on a shelf in the office supply cabinet and others are sitting in a multi drawer cabinet on a table. Each drawer is neatly labeled, but on the whole it is not real practical to pick it up and carry it where it might be needed.

I once pointed this out to the guy who is more or less in charge of such things. I am not real sure he thought it was all that important that a FAK be able to be brought to were it is needed.

I do know there is a tendency to bolt them to a wall somewhere on the theory they will get legs otherwise.

One place was so paranoid about their FAKs that they put padlocks on them and only gave the keys to members of the safety committee. Initially they had FAKs w/o locks. But people would actually use the items in the FAKs from time to time, and that somehow offended the safety committee so they put up signs next to all the FAKs all but prohibiting people not on the safety committee from accessing the FAKs. Apparently that did not dissuade people from taking a band-aid now and then, hence the padlocks. The same place sent a memo out about who was authorized to give first aid that all but prohibited people who were not on the safety committee from giving any first aid at all.

Warning - I am not an expert on anything having to do with this forum, but that won't stop me from saying what I think. smile


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