Sunday, April 23, 2006
While we probably do not express sufficiently our appreciation, the entire elder community of south Florida owes a lot to the teams of Fire –Rescue people that respond to 911 calls. Few of us reach the age of eighty or eighty-five without having been the beneficiary at some point of these ladies and gentlemen. They are on the go night and day serving not just private homes, but also all the Continuing Care Retirement Communities, but Assisted Living facilities and Nursing homes. Our neighborhood station is proud to be “on scene” in under seven minutes from the call and usually faster.
I can attest to the fact that they know their stuff. Just as important, they are caring souls that make the extra effort when necessary. My personal experience: I was on the way from the hospital to our skilled nursing center for recuperation from an operation to glue together the pieces of a shattered acetabulum. I was in a pseudo-ambulance, a vehicle equipped to transport, but not much more. I was chatting with the attendant in back with me. There was a sudden jamming of brakes and the driver let out a censorable exclamation. The attendant with me instantly became authoritative. He calmly said to the driver, “Call it in!” He examined my IV carefully as he asked, “Can you be alone for a few minutes?” I couldn’t see what was going on but I learned later that two people were trapped in a car which had been broadsided in front of us. The Palm Beach County Fire-Rescue arrived soon. I could hear them arrive. With that the crew driving me returned and we were on our way. The attendant explained to me that he was a Broward Co. EMT and his insurance was provided by Broward. He was moonlighting in Palm Beach. If he was hurt outside Boward, he was not covered. Yet he went yanking and prying on a smashed car to try to save those people even though he was not covered.
There should be a “Day” for these folks.