Archive | December, 2009

Woman injured in ambulance crash

Posted on 02 December 2009 by wyoskibum

JACKSONVILLE, FL – A Green Cove Springs woman was a passenger in a private ambulance involved in a fatal crash Sunday, Nov. 29, on Phillips Highway that sent seven people to the hospital.

Julie Kathryn Raymer, 44, suffered serious injuries in the crash that happened at 8:18 p.m. where Philips Highway intersections Interstate 95, the Florida Highway Patrol said.

The 2007 Ford ambulance driven by Brian Wayne Gray, 25, of Jacksonville was southbound on Philips Highway was turning left onto the I-95 entrance ramp when it was struck a northbound pickup truck driven by Michael Jason Linder, 19, of Jacksonville, the Highway Patrol said. A passenger in the truck, Megan Elizabeth Bunn, 18, of St. Augustine was fatally injured and three other Jacksonville residents in the truck were seriously injured, the Highway Patrol said.

Gray had serious injuries and Linder was critically injured. None of the occupants of the pickup were wearing seatbelts; Gray and Raymer were wearing seatbelts, the Highway Patrol said.


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North Port man charged after fighting to escape ambulance

Posted on 02 December 2009 by wyoskibum

NORTH PORT, FL — A man on his way to the hospital after an alleged drunken fight tried to open the doors of the ambulance he was riding in while it was still moving, according to police.

Rudy Eichendorff, 42, of the 6000 block of Biscayne Drive, faces three counts of battery on a law enforcement officer or firefighter for reportedly fighting the emergency workers who were trying to help him.

North Port police said Eichendorff voluntarily went with paramedics after police found him bloodied and sitting on the front porch of his house Friday evening after a 911 call reporting a fight at a nearby convenience store.

Eichendorff refused to talk to police about the fight or how he received cuts on his neck.

While Eichendorff was being taken via ambulance to an area hospital, he sat up from his stretcher and began punching and shoving one of the paramedics in an attempt to leave the ambulance, police said.

He was restrained from exiting the ambulance and turned over to North Port Police. Eichendorff is also charged with resisting arrest without violence for allegedly refusing to cooperate with police.

Eichendorff remained in Sarasota County Jail on Tuesday.


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Chicago woman accused of punching paramedic

Posted on 02 December 2009 by wyoskibum

CHICAGO, IL – A 40-year-old Chicago woman faces battery and drug possession charges after allegedly punching a paramedic and spitting on a nurse.

Chicago police say Kimberly Jones was due in bond court Saturday.

Police say officers were responding to a suspicious person call Friday when they stopped Jones. She said she was having breathing problems after consuming illicit drugs.

Officers called for fire department paramedics, who began interviewing Jones. She allegedly punched one of them in the face.

She was taken to a South Side hospital, where she spit in the face of a male nurse.

She’s charged with felony aggravated battery to first aid personnel, misdemeanor battery and possession of a controlled substance.

It wasn’t immediately clear whether she has an attorney.


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Fire Department to review procedures after Halloween night beating

Posted on 02 December 2009 by wyoskibum

MADISON, WI – The Madison Fire Department will review its procedures to see if changes are needed after paramedics responding to a 911 call for a man who had been beaten did not know the victim had been assaulted, Chief Debra Amesqua said.

Amesqua said paramedics were initially dispatched for an unknown problem involving an unconscious man in the 400 block of West Doty Street shortly after bar time Halloween night. Paramedics were not aware of an update stating that the man might have been beaten, which a 911 call taker sent two minutes before paramedics arrived at the scene at 2:20 a.m. Nov. 1.

“The fact that this male had been beaten up was information that we would have liked to have had,” Amesqua said. “I do think that our approach would have been different if we knew that the person had been beaten up.”

Paul Logan, support services manager for the 911 center, said call takers type messages to dispatchers and emergency responders while they are on the phone getting information from callers. Ideally, the fact that the man might have been beaten would have been included in the call taker’s initial communication, sent two minutes before an update including that information, he said.

The need for call takers to communicate critical information as soon as possible will be reviewed in an upcoming in-service training, Logan said.

But he said the call was handled according to the center’s protocols and dispatched as a high priority, and paramedics were at the scene within six minutes.

Accounts of what took place next differ.

Jordan Miller, 21, of Salem in Kenosha County said he suffered permanent injuries, including five fractures in his spine, when he was knocked backward over the railing of a first floor porch at 436 W. Doty St. by a man he said he didn’t know.

Miller said he lost consciousness, then woke to three men kicking him and making derogatory references to his sexual orientation, while another man took money from his wallet. Miller is gay.

The assault began after a female friend, with whom he had been arguing after they had been out drinking, kicked him and he pushed her away, Miller said.

A woman passing by began hitting one of the attackers with her shoe, then lay on top of Miller to stop the attack, he said.

Miller’s mother, Holly Wells, has sought unsuccessfully to find the woman they credit with saving her son’s life, both to thank her and to obtain additional information about the incident, which Madison police are now investigating.

Because of his injuries, which medical records show also include bulging discs, Miller was unable to complete the fall semester at UW-Parkside, and it is uncertain if he will be able to start a theater job in New York City scheduled to begin in January, he said.

Miller said he told a paramedic, whom he thought was a police officer, that he had just been beaten and could not get up. He said the paramedic told him to get up or he would be taken to detox then pulled him up and took him back to the house of the friend with whom he had been arguing.

Miller said the paramedic asked if he needed an ambulance, and he replied that he had no health insurance. The paramedic then questioned whether he was refusing medical treatment, but Miller did not reply, Miller said.

Amesqua said the paramedic, Gary Schreiber, denied that Miller told him he had been beaten. Miller also had no apparent injuries, she said.

Schreiber told a police detective that Miller refused medical treatment, Amesqua said.

A Fire Department report indicates paramedics responded to “a man sleeping in a alley. We were able to get him up and inside his house.”

According to the 911 center, the ambulance was back in service less than two minutes after arriving at the scene, and a police officer sent to assist paramedics was at the scene for 18 seconds.

There is no indication that the officer spoke with Miller, said Central District Capt. Mary Schauf. It was unclear whether the officer was aware that Miller might have been beaten.

Miller returned home the same morning and later sought medical treatment. He filed a report with police Nov. 2 after learning the department had no report of his assault, he said.

Schreiber declined an interview request, fire department spokeswoman Lori Wirth said. Amesqua said Schreiber, who has been with the department for 13 years and has been a paramedic for five years, acted appropriately.

Neighbor Mike Zydowicz, 22, said he called 911 after a house guest who had been on his back porch woke him and said someone was being beaten up outside.

In his 911 call, a recording of which was obtained by the State Journal, Zydowicz says, “Someone said they beat some guy up … we don’t feel a pulse and we need somebody over here right away … he’s just laying there in a lump … it’s not good.”

Logan said that after police and paramedics were initially dispatched for an unknown problem involving an unconscious man, police and fire dispatchers were busy dispatching other calls and did not radio them the updated information that Miller might have been beaten.

While the new information was sent to paramedics electronically, Amesqua said, paramedics have to manually refresh their computer screen to view updates, which is not part of their protocol. The department will review the incident to see if any changes are needed to ensure paramedics have the most current information, she said.

Schauf said the police department was adequately staffed for the city’s annual Halloween celebration, which drew about 44,000 revelers to State Street for Freakfest.

Miller’s lawyer, Jeff Scott Olson, said his client’s injuries were not exacerbated by the paramedic and no action against the fire or police department is planned.

“I don’t fault the police or the paramedic for their handling of this situation on Halloween, when they’re stretched to the breaking point,” Olson said, adding, “It would have been nice if they had had a little more time for him.”


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Ambulance catches fire in Lansing

Posted on 02 December 2009 by wyoskibum

LANSING, MI – An ambulance transporting a patient to Sparrow Hospital Thursday evening caught fire, according to the Lansing Fire Department.

Capt. Maggie Murphy said that the fire occurred at about 8:15 p.m. on northbound Pennsylvania Avenue near Interstate 496.

Two medic crew members and a patient were on board the ambulance, which was from the Grand Ledge Fire Department, Murphy said. All three were able to get out of the vehicle and no one was hurt.

The patient was then transported to Sparrow via Lansing fire.

The fire apparently started in the vehicle’s engine and spread to the cab, Murphy said. Engine repairs had recently been made to the ambulance, she added.


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Seminole fires ambulance director amid inquiry

Posted on 02 December 2009 by wyoskibum

SEMINOLE, FL — The director of the city-owned ambulance service was fired Tuesday while an investigation continues into missing narcotics from the business.

Josh Hair was fired as director of Medicus, and Janesa Miller was appointed interim director, City Manager Steve Saxon said.

Saxon would not specify why Hair was terminated.

“His termination should not be construed as an indictment in any way regarding the missing drugs at Medicus,‚Äù Saxon said.

He said Hair cooperated in the recent Oklahoma Bureau of Narcotics and Dangerous Drugs Control investigation and submitted to a voluntary drug test.

Saxon said all but one of Medicus’ 20 employees agreed to the test. Not all the results are in, he said.

No arrests have been made in connection with the missing drugs.

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West Frankfort ambulance controversy heats up

Posted on 02 December 2009 by wyoskibum

WEST FRANKFORT, Il -  It appears the controversy surrounding ambulance service in West Frankfort has taken a new turn.

Dozens packed Tuesday’s city council meeting to show support for the West Frankfort Fire Department’s ambulance service. ¬†However, right now the city is not budging.

“Our concern has always been for the safety of the citizens,” Local Firefighters 2402 Union President Craig Lemmon said.

However, these days West Frankfort Fighters, like Lemmon, are not answering many 911 medical calls.  Instead Cardinal EMS is takes most of those.

Police and Fire Commissioner Leon Sailliez says that change was only to be for a short time.

“All the meetings I was in on it was six months,” Sailliez said.

Street Commissioner Frank Browning said, “It was never six months,”

Lemmon says he did not know about that until Tuesday’s city council meeting.

That is when an agreement came off the fax machine from Cardinal EMS after a request by commissioner Sailliez.  On it are just two signatures, Mayor Marion Presley and the President of Cardinal EMS.

Mayor Presley was not available for comment due to health issues.

Instead, Streets Commissioner Frank Browning answered our questions.

“We voted to let the mayor handle it,” Browning said. ¬†”I’m thinking it was in May,” he added.

“It was never voted through the city council and nobody had even seen a contract,” Sailliez explained.

Cardinal EMS was brought in to save the city dollars.  Sailliez says it has saved the city about 50 hours a month in overtime.

“The Fire department asked us to do this.¬† They asked us to take them (Cardinal EMS) in,” Browning said.

“We never agreed to get rid of our ambulance ever.¬† We said we would go to a back up for 6-months until they got on their feet financially,” Lemmon explained.

The end of the 6-month period comes up next week.

“They’re paramedics we’re not and they are more qualified to do the work. ¬†They got the equipment to do the work,” Browning said.

However, Lemmon said, “We’ve had four or five complaints and that’s something we have taken for granted that we did.¬† If a call came in to the West Frankfort Fire Department we just went and did it.”

Lemmon also says its part of their contract with the city to provide EMS services.

In May, the city council approved the West Frankfort Firefighters employment contract just days before the mayor signed a one-year agreement with Cardinal EMS.

City Attorney Mike Riva says due to the nature of the controversy and possible future litigation he is not able to make any comment at this time.


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Ambulance involved in accident

Posted on 02 December 2009 by wyoskibum

CHARLES TOWN, WV – The driver of a Friendship Fire Co. ambulance and two volunteers inside were injured early Wednesday afternoon after their emergency vehicle was involved in an accident with a tractor-trailer.

The accident happened between noon and 12:15 p.m. at the intersection of U.S. 340, Marlowe Road and Country Club Road in Jefferson County, after the ambulance crew was responding to an emergency call in Harpers Ferry.

“Three people were injured. One was flown from the scene to Winchester Medical Center, and two were transported by ground to Jefferson Memorial. One was career staff for the county and the other two were volunteers,” said Jason Gore, assistant fire chief with the Independent Fire Co.

The driver, who was the county employee, was the patient flown out via helicopter, and Gore said he was conscious and breathing at the time he was transported.

All the names and conditions of those injured were not available Wednesday afternoon, but the driver was later identified as David Swan, of the Ranson area. A family member confirmed late Wednesday night that Swan was home from the hospital. He had some broken ribs and other injuries, but he was doing OK.

Deputy J. Bradshaw of the Jefferson County Sheriff’s Department was investigating the accident, Sheriff Robert “Bobby” Shirley said. A message left with Bradshaw at his office was not returned as of presstime.

Both lanes of U.S. 340 were shut down for more than an hour after the accident.

“It just was chaos there for awhile, but we got it worked out and we got traffic moving as quickly as we could. I don’t know the condition of the (driver),” Shirley said Wednesday evening. “I think he did a U-turn in front of the tractor-trailer is what I was told.”

Scott Biller, assistant chief of the Friendship Fire Co., said the department also is investigating the incident.

“We did have an ambulance involved an accident with an 18-wheeler on 340,” Biller said. “I’m in the midst of our investigation, trying to figure out exactly where we’re standing right now.”

Gore said the ambulance had been travelling toward Charles Town when it received another call for service in Harpers Ferry. The accident occurred as it was in the process of getting turned around to go back to Harpers Ferry, Gore said.


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Garrard EMS worker fired

Posted on 02 December 2009 by wyoskibum

LANCASTER — The employee charged with stealing morphine from the Garrard County ambulance service was suspended and eventually fired after allegedly admitting to theft of narcotics, according to letters sent from Judge-Executive John Wilson.

Thomas Shelton, 37, of Lancaster was charged with 21 counts of theft of a controlled substance on Nov. 18. Shelton allegedly stole morphine from ambulance service supplies 21 times between February 2008 and August 2009.

Wilson said on Monday that ambulance service Director Colby Arnold alerted him to the situation during the first part of September, after which Wilson immediately contacted state police.

Wilson sent a letter to Shelton on Sept. 14 informing him he had been suspended.

“Your department head has requested your suspension due to your alleged misconduct in being responsible for theft of drugs from EMS,” the letter reads. “It is my understanding that you have confessed responsibility for this to both Director Colby Arnold and to state police Detective Bill Collins.”

Wilson said Arnold also filed a complaint with the Kentucky Board of Emergency Medical Services, informing it of the misconduct. Terri DeAtley, a legal assistant with KBEMS, confirmed a complaint was filed Sept. 14 and there is an ongoing investigation. The case will come before the board for review whenever it meets again, she said, though there is no official date for a meeting set.

Wilson sent a second letter to Shelton on Oct. 13 informing him he had been fired. Wilson wrote in the letter that Shelton was being fired for theft of narcotics and stated again that Shelton admitted the theft to both Collins and Arnold.

Deputy Judge-Executive James Bushnell said Tuesday that Wilson received no replies to either letter.

Shelton has a pre-trial conference scheduled for 9 a.m. Dec. 18 in Garrard County Circuit Court. Each of the 21 charges against him is a Class D felony, which carries a sentence of at least one but not more than five years in prison.


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Two Hospitalized in Ambulance Rollover

Posted on 02 December 2009 by wyoskibum

MORGANTOWN, WV –¬†Two people involved in an ambulance rollover accident in Monongalia County are still in the hospital.

Melissa Slavensky, a Ruby Memorial Hospital employee, and a newborn are patients at Ruby, according to Amy Johns, Director of Public Affairs at West Virginia University Hospitals and Health Sciences Center.

Slavensky is in good condition, Johns said.

The accident happened at about 8 p.m. Tuesday on Route 705.

The ambulance was running its lights and sirens when it hit the median, crossed the road, and rolled twice, according to the Monongalia County Sheriff’s Department.

Five people were injured, including two EMS workers, two nurses and the baby, deputies said.

Johns could not give a condition update on the child, but said the ambulance was already bringing the baby to the hospital at the time of the accident.


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Three hurt when tractor-trailer strikes ambulance

Posted on 02 December 2009 by wyoskibum

CHARLES TOWN, W.Va. — An ambulance driver from Ranson, W.Va., was flown to Winchester (Va.) Medical Center after a tractor-trailer hauling lumber struck the emergency vehicle Wednesday morning near Charles Town, police said.

David Swan, 54, who works for Jefferson County Emergency Services Agency, was injured in the collision at the intersection of U.S. 340 and Old Country Club Road, according to Jefferson County Sheriff’s Deputy G.W. Bradshaw.

Melanie Goff, 18, of Charles Town, and Ciara Boggs, 20, of Harpers Ferry, volunteers with Friendship Fire Co. who were aboard the ambulance, were taken to Jefferson Memorial Hospital for their injuries, Bradshaw said.

No official information on the conditions of the injured was available Wednesday evening.

The tractor-trailer driver, Harold Bolick, 44, of Hudson, N.C., was not injured in the accident, which was reported at 11:43 a.m., according to the Jefferson County Emergency Communications Center.

Bolick, who was hauling lumber from Baltimore to Granite Falls, N.C., told police he switched lanes on U.S. 340 as he approached the Old Country Club Road intersection because of slowing traffic, and had a green light to continue through the intersection where the collision occurred, Bradshaw said.

The ambulance, which was traveling toward Charles Town, was struck in the driver’s side area as it was turning around at the intersection to respond to an emergency call in the direction of Harpers Ferry, Bradshaw said.

The accident, which tied up traffic for more than an hour, was under investigation, Bradshaw said.


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Franklin Twp. removes Quakertown rescue squad as its EMS provider

Posted on 02 December 2009 by wyoskibum

FRANKLIN TWP., NJ — Calling the friction between the Quakertown Fire Company and the Quakertown rescue squad “a delicate situation,” Mayor Robert Shockley joined with the other members of the Township Committee in a unanimous vote to remove the rescue squad from providing “any services” in the township. Effective immediately, emergency medical services will be provided by Quakertown Fire EMTs, with backup assistance from Clinton and Flemington-Raritan rescue squads.

About 150 people attended the Township Committee’s special meeting Tuesday night in the gym at Franklin Township School. Quakertown Fire Chief Bradley Patkochis promised “there will be no reduction in care to the citizens” as his group ramps up to replace the rescue squad. The fire company already runs a “quick repsonse unit” to provide advanced life support care, and expects to provide ambulance service for basic life support by December 18.

The fire company and rescue squad has been at odds for at least 18 months, the mayor said. The need for a resolution was heightened after emergency vehicles from each group nearly collided while responding to an auto accident.

“If you want us to come back, we will,” said Quakertown rescue president David Evans. “We will not leave you… We’d like to say goodbye. It’s been a great pleasure.”

It will not be the end of the Quakertown Volunteer Emergency Medical Services, however. The squad will continue to provide services in parts of Alexandria and Union townships, Evans said.

The Township Committee was acting on recommendations from a study it ordered from Dr. Harold C. Cohen of TriData in Arlington, Va., who attended the meeting and fielded questions from township officials, the public and fire and rescue personnel. In his analysis, he praised the work of both groups, but said, “QVEMS’ actions appear divisive and not in the best interest of the community” and that two emergency services organizations were not needed in the township. “Imagine what would be possible,” he said, with one organization providing fire and medical response.

Evans, who is an attorney, said state law forbids a fire district, such as Franklin’s, from running an EMS service. “If we follow Dr. Cohen’s advice, we’d be in violation” of the law, he said.

But Cohen said he saw no such prohibition and Township Committeeman Robert McGeary, who is also a lawyer, said he hasn’t reviewed the statutes, but said he believes “there are no bars” to the decision.

Many have speculated that QVEMS will sue the township over Tuesday’s decision, but in an interview, Evans said, “The squad hasn’t discussed legal action… we are not contemplating a lawsuit.”


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