EMTs Face All Kinds of Danger

By: Jessica Dealy Email
By: Jessica Dealy Email

Officials with Metro Ambulance say a pair of their EMTs were attacked over the weekend by a man wielding a samurai sword.

Officials say the attack happened on a routine 'decreased level of consciousness' call.

A man in the house allegedly came after the EMTs with the sword. Neither was seriously injured, but they were certainly shaken up. No charges have been filed yet.

The attempted attack certainly draws attention to how dangerous this job can be.

EMTs respond to car crashes. They even come to our houses when we are hurt or have a medical emergency.

Before responding to even the most common of calls, dispatchers working for Metro Ambulance make attempts at ensuring the safety of EMTs.

Operations manager Johnny Williamson says the current methods used to diagnose a scene usually keep EMTs safe from harm.

"It is a pre-set protocol that under certain situations you do notify police to come to the scene and assist you," said Williamson. "If there is an indication that there is a violent situation that has occurred, then the ambulance will stand by in close proximity of the call until police arrive."

EMTs go into situations every day not knowing what could happen. A normal every day call could turn life threatening in seconds.

In the most recent alleged assault involved a man holding a samurai sword in the house they were called to. Both men called for assistance and were unharmed but no doubt, shaken up.

EMT Brian McCary says the news of violence used against medical personnel is a reminder to never let your guard down while on the job.

"It'll make you be more on your toes," said McCary. "Take in the area of the scene you're called to. Be conscious and aware of your surroundings."

On-the-job injuries are pretty common for EMTs. A recent study in the American Journal of Industrial Medicine found that ten percent of EMTs miss work because of an injury on any given day. It's 19 percent in cities. To compare, the rate for the rest of the population is just over one percent.

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  • by Anonymous on Jan 17, 2010 at 05:10 AM
    well that work in the public are walking targets.. few gives respect.. be it pull to the other-side of the road, pull over to let us pass.. ____ like me was at the Sam dale fire a few yrs back and the fools coming down from kemper are score at me because the i had the road blocked and was hit a few times with beer bottles.. here is somethign for one to think of.. 12 yrs ago in another state a few fools caused a wreck of a fire EMT response team the guy was a well (____ in short he lost his family as his stunt set up another dept to respond and wasnt time to save them.. yes a loss and a lesson learned.. just think when you cut off dont give way.. or somethign stupid it might be your family we are responding to..
  • by Man on the Street Location: Meridian on Jan 15, 2010 at 05:46 PM
    Sorry Anonymous, but the cops don't get to just roll up and throw people in jail. If they don't witness the crime they can't make the arrest (see warrantless arrests www.michie.com). The victim has to sign charges, the cops can't pursue a case without the victim (exception Dom. Vio.) MPD's rarely has problems with response time. You failed to mention that all those ambulances work on a seperate radio channel than the cops, Of course they got there first. The call had to go from Metro dispatch, to PD dispatch, and then to the officer, the ambulance crews were listening to it as it happened. You can't blaim the cops for metro's decision weather or not to lock up the nut with the sword. Get your facts straight.
  • by Huffy Location: ponta creek delta on Jan 14, 2010 at 10:01 AM
    eye for won am wore out with this and all war. what need do we have to study such any mo?
  • by A REAL EMT Location: MERIDIAN on Jan 13, 2010 at 09:06 PM
  • by Anonymous on Jan 13, 2010 at 04:47 PM
    The saddest part is that management at Metro will not allow the EMT and Paramedic to press charges. If they do they are told to drop charges or find a new job. This isn't the first time these guys have been in harms way like this, but it is the first time I have seen it reported. Good job WTOK for reporting it. Something they also face is the lack of quick response from MPD in these cases. This time for instance fellow ambulances, multiple ambulances, made it to that location before the cops did, and then they did not even arrest the people who attacked them, that is just sad.
  • by Andrew Location: UK on Jan 12, 2010 at 10:29 PM
    Paramedics and EMTs world wide are poorly paid and in dangerous situations every day. Despite professional training, often to degree or post graduate level, we are still seen as a trade or semi-skilled workers at best rather than as medical professionals. We do not become EMTs and Paramedics to make huge incomes. We sacrifice our time, money, and often family and social lives, so that we can relieve suffering and so that others may live.
  • by Huffy Location: SLAUGHTERHELL MOTORSPORTS 666 RACING FOR SATAN'S DEMISE on Jan 12, 2010 at 02:45 PM
    goot google eyed googles batman. trux and fuel what they are how can we afford an ambulance company and not a garbage company? sounds like a load of garbage yar eye eye. for what a way too long short ride cost without the comfort of comfort and not pay the krew??? let 'em eat ambien. googlers google "ambien problems" the emt's would be on level ground for their ate bucks get yo samarisake sword and head out on a call and they betta be prepared for when that krew rolls up in there;^) thank the not dark my mutha ain't had to fly metro home or tote her trash off to an ungreen box eyes rat here waitin' for the show to git to the road or this trash gone float off to greener ponds with reel schlyme ;)
  • by Anonymous on Jan 11, 2010 at 11:20 PM
    Do you SERIOUSLY make more at McD? lol....I need to put in an application then...
  • by Anonymous on Jan 11, 2010 at 07:37 PM
    they should always wait for police.... They should make more than $8 an hour too....I aksed one tonite at Cefco and I could not believe it. He said he was a driver and I figured they made around $9.50 an hour... I make more at McDonalds.... I am glad they are around....
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