Mike the Medic

March 25, 2010
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It’s six in the morning when the alarm goes off.

“Station 51 – Traffic Accident with Injuries – Wilmington Avenue and East Carson. Wilmington Avenue and East Carson. Ambulance is responding. Time out: 06:05.”

“Station 51, 10-4. KMG365,” replies Captain Hank Stanley.

Cap hands a copy of the call slip to his senior paramedic, Roy DeSoto, who hands it to his partner, John Gage. “You’d think they’d at least wait until after breakfast,” yawns Gage.

When they get there, they notice an overturned school bus on top of a pick-up truck. John checks on the driver of the pick-up, as Roy checks on the school bus driver, only to discover that the bus is full of students.

“Cap! We’re going to need additional manpower here! We’ve got a bunch of kids on this bus!” yells Roy.

“L.A., Engine 51. Respond additional squads, engines, and ambulances to our location. Also, contact Carson High School and inform them that one of their school buses – number 2 – has been in an accident with several students on board.”

“Engine 51.”

“Squad & Engine 36, Squad & Engine 10, Engine 127 – Assist Engine 51 with a Traffic Accident with Injuries - Wilmington Avenue and East Carson. Wilmington Avenue and East Carson. Ambulances are responding. Time out: 06:25.”

“Chet, Marco, get the jaws so we can at least get this guy out of the pick-up!” yells Cap.

“Right, Cap,” reply Marco Lopez and Chet Kelly.

“It doesn’t look like he’s hurt or anything. It looks like the impact of the bus just jammed his door shut,” Johnny says in amazement. “We’ll have you out in a minute,” he adds to the driver.

After a couple of minutes, they have the truck door open, and the driver walks over to Squad 51, leaving the entire crew of Station 51 speechless.

“Holy crap.” This is all Chet can say, which pretty much sums up what everyone is thinking.

Meanwhile…

The crews of 51, 36, 10, and 127 are working on the school bus. Some of the students on board are hurt pretty bad, and some are in very critical condition.

Johnson of Squad 10 reports eight students on the bus. Roy and John are working on one of the students, who just has some cut and bruises, when the bus driver goes into cardiac arrest.

“Roy! John!” yells Engineer Mike Stoker. “This guy’s in cardiac arrest!”

“Get the defibrillator!” yells Roy. “400 watts per!”

“1, 2, 3, 4. Ok, hit him!” says Johnny.

“Clear!”

Roy zaps the driver and patches him up to Rampart.

Mike takes biophone duty. “Rampart Emergency, this is Squad 51.”

“Go ahead, 51,” comes the voice of Dr. Brackett.

“Rampart, we have a male about forty-five years of age, involved in a school bus crash. Stand-by for vital signs.”

“10-4, 51.”

“Pulse is 120. BP is 90 over 60. Respiration’s 16 and shallow,” says John.

“Rampart, pulse is 120, BP is 90 over 60, and respiration is 16 and shallow. Also, Rampart, the victim was in V-Fib and we defibrillated. He is now showing sinus rhythm.”

“51, start an IV with D5W, TKO, add 10 milligrams 1-10,000 Epinephrine IV, and start an Isoproterenol drip. Also, 51, administer two amps Sodium Bi-Carb, and insert an esophageal airway. And, send me a strip, 51.”

“We’ve got him patched up and we’re sending you a strip. This will be lead two,” says Stoker. “Roy, John, start an IV with D5W, TKO, add a 10 milligrams 1-10,000 Epinephrine IV, and start an Isoproterenol drip. Also, 51, administer two amps Sodium Bi-Carb, and insert an esophageal airway.”

“Right, Mike,” replies John.

“51, EKG looks good,” says Dr. Brackett. “Is there an ambulance there yet, 51?”

“10-4. Ambulance has just arrived.”

“Ok, 51. Transport as soon as possible.”

“10-4, Rampart. ETA is about ten minutes.”

“Mike, we’re both gonna go in the ambulance. Do you mind driving the squad in?” Roy says to Mike.

“Sure thing, Roy.”

Meanwhile, at the hospital…

“Dix, get room five ready, and have either Dr.’s Pierce or Hunnicutt look at him. I’m due in surgery,” instructs Kel.

“Right, Kel,” says Dixie. “Margaret, get Dr.’s Pierce and Hunnicutt down here right away. Squad 51 is bringing in a trauma and cardiac case.”

“Sure thing, Dixie,” says Margaret Houlihan.

Margaret is looking for Pierce and Hunnicutt, and finds them in the E.R. lounge.

“Hey, Hawk,” says B.J.

“Yeah, Beej?”

“Remember that time you pulled Winchester’s pants down in the O.R.?”

“The whole thing was your idea! And I also remember you got what was comin’ to ya!”

“That was twenty-five years ago. Let it go, Hawk!”

“Pierce, Hunnicutt, Dr. Brackett needs you in Room Five. Squad 51 is bringing in a trauma and cardiac case,” orders Margaret.

The ambulance is coming in, and Pierce is waiting at the door.

“Get him into Room Five!”

The bus driver goes into V-Fib just as they get him onto the treatment table.

“One, two, three. Clear!” yells B.J.

“Ok. He’s in sinus rhythm. You guys can go,” says Hawkeye.

“Sure thing. See ya, Doc,” say Johnny and Roy.

“Hey, Dix,” says Gage. “I see you’ve finally met Mike Stoker. How’s it goin’, Mike?”

“How’s the bus driver doing, Roy?” asks Mike.

“Dr. Pierce and Dr. Hunnicutt are working on him now,” replies Roy.

“Hey, Roy,” says Dixie. “Did you know that ol’ Mike here is thinking about joining the paramedics?”

Johnny looks a bit surprised. “Really? What brought this up all of a sudden?”

“I don’t know. I guess it comes from watching you guys for four years.”

“Well, we’ll be glad to have you, Mike,” says Roy. “Welcome aboard.”

“That was supposed to be a secret, Dixie.”

“Sorry, Mike.”

“Come on, Mike, Johnny,” says Roy, “we’ve gotta get back to the station.”

“Yeah,” says Johnny. “Cap’s probably wondering where Mikey is right now.”

Mike is looking at Gage as if to say, “Don’t call me ‘Mikey,’ ya jerk!”

It is a very silent walk to the squad.

On the way back to the station, Roy and John start talking to Mike about his future.

“So, Mike,” says Gage. “Have you given any thought about your future?”

“Well, ––”

“Mike,” says Roy. “You know what happens when you successfully complete paramedic training? You’ll be transferred to a different station.”

“Yeah. And with our luck,” says Gage, “you’ll be sent to 116’s.”

“Guys,” says Mike, “I just want to become a paramedic, just in case there isn’t a Squad around.”

“Ah, I get it now,” says Gage. “If we get sidetracked on the way to a call, you can help out medically. I gotcha.”

“Whatever you guys do,” says Mike, “don’t tell anyone, especially Chet Kelly.”

“Don’t worry,” says Roy, “nobody would believe us if we did.”

“Roy, John, Mike,” yells Cap, “could you guys come in here for a minute?”

“This can’t be good,” groans Gage.

“Yeah, Cap,” says Roy. “Did we do something wrong?”

“No. but, close the door anyway, Mike,” says Cap.

“So why’d you want us in here, Cap?” asks a very confused Mike Stoker.

“About fifteen minutes ago, I got a call from Rampart. More specifically, from Dixie McCall. It seems as though our very own Mike Stoker might be interested in becoming a paramedic.”

“We were just talking about that on the ride back here,” explains Roy.

“I told Dixie to keep that between us,” says Mike, obviously a little upset. “I don’t mind that she told Gage and DeSoto, but you know how safe a secret is around here. Do Chet and Marco know?”

Cap responds with, “I don’t think so. They shouldn’t unless they were listening on the other phone, which is very likely. Chet is the one who told me Dixie was on the phone.”

“Then, I might as well say good-bye to my dignity.”

“I wouldn’t quite go that far,” says Cap. “Just act like yourself for now. You know Chet will say something to you if he knows.”

“But, Mike,” says Gage, “if Chet start to get your blood boiling, just threaten to scalp him, starting with his upper lip.”

“Thanks, Gage.”

Roy, John, Mike, and Cap walk into the dayroom when Chet takes his first shot at Mike.

“Hey, Mike, did the chief paramedic just fire you?”

“Hey, Chet,” says Cap, “lay off, will ya?”

“Yeah, Chet,” says Marco. “How would you like it if you were transferred to a Brush Unit and Mike started making fun of you?”

“Ok, ok. Not another word,” says Chet. “It might be nice to have a third paramedic around here.”

“Why do you say that, Chet?” asks Mike.

“For example,” says Cap, “remember about a month ago, us and Engine 36 were called to an explosion and structure fire. Roy and John had to tend to a woman that had just got hit by a car.”

“Valerie,” growls Gage.

“Anyway,” continues Cap. “Us and Engine 36 got there at the same time. I had 36 take the fire while we tended to the victims. Three lived, one was a Code-F. In fact, it was Mike who told me he was dead, and I told him to help with the living. One guy had a piece of metal in his eye, and Chet tended to a woman with burns on her legs.”

The alarm goes off right when Cap gets to the female burn victim.

“Squad 51 – Difficulty Breathing – 310 West 218th Street. 3-1-0 West 218th Street. Cross street: Moneta Avenue. Time out: 13:48.”

“Squad 51, 10-4. KMG365,” says Cap. “Why don’t you go with ‘em, Mike?”

“Sure, Cap.”

Cap hands the call slip to Mike when he gets in the Squad.

“Let’s go get ‘em, Mike,” says Gage as Roy pulls the Squad out of the bay.

“Difficulty breathing,” says Mike.

“Yeah,” says Gage. “About 85% of these end up turning into cardiac arrest.”

“Want me to take Biophone duty again?”

“I think you’d better, Mike,” says Roy. “That way Johnny and I can both have free hands to tend to the patient.”

“Right, Roy.”

There is a woman on the side of the road when the Squad pulls up. “Hurry, please! He’s inside!”

“What happened, ma’am?” asks Gage.

“My husband was watching T.V. when he started saying he couldn’t breathe, and collapsed!”

Roy, John, and Mike walk into the house, and see a man unconscious, clutching his chest.

“Mike, call for an ambulance!” yells Roy.

“L.A., Squad 51. Respond an ambulance to our location. We have a man in cardiac arrest,” Mike says into the H.T.

“Squad 51.”

“Roy, this guy’s in V.-Fib.!” Gage yells after he gets the EKG hooked up.

“Ok, John. 400 watts!”

“1. 2. 3. 4. Ok, hit him!”

“Clear!”

Roy shocks him with no change.

“Again!”

“1. 2. 3. 4. Hit him!”

“Clear!”

Roy shocks him again, and the patient goes into sinus rhythm.

“Come on, let’s get him patched into Rampart, Johnny.”

After they got all the wires hooked up, Mike makes the call to Rampart.

“Rampart Emergency, this is Squad 51.”

“Go ahead, 51,” comes the voice of Dr. Pierce.

“Rampart, we have a male about 59 years old, was complaining of shortness of breath, but was comatose upon arrival. Patient was in V.-Fib., we shocked twice, and is now showing sinus rhythm. Stand by for vital signs.”

“10-4, 51.”

“Mike,” says Gage, “pulse is 152 and rapid. BP is 70 over 50. Respiration is 16 and shallow.”

“And, we’ve got him on six liters of oxygen,” says Roy.

“Rampart,” says Mike, “pulse is 152. BP is 70 over 50. Respirations are 16 and shallow. Also, Rampart, we’ve got the patient on six liters of oxygen.”

“51,” says Hawkeye, “start an IV with D5W, TKO, add 10 milligrams 1-10,000 Epinephrine IV, and start an Isoproterenol drip. Also, 51, administer two amps Sodium Bi-Carb, and insert an esophageal airway. Can you send me a strip, 51?”

“Rampart, we have the victim hooked up , and are sending you a strip. This will be Lead Two.”

“EKG looks good 51,” says Hawkeye. “Keep monitoring vitals and get him in here as fast as you can fly!”

“10-4, Rampart,” says Mike. “Rampart, we have a new set of vitals. Pulse is 102 and strong. BP is 110 over 68. Respiration is 13.”

“Has the ambulance arrived yet, 51?”

“10-4, Rampart, the ambulance has just arrived.”

“Get him in here, 51.”

“Dix,” says Pierce, “get Room Three ready. 51’s bringing in a cardiac patient.”

“Right, Hawkeye.”

Ten minutes later, the ambulance and Squad pull into the emergency entrance.

“Get him into Room Three,” says Dixie when they roll the gurney into the hospital.

“Ok, let’s get him on the table,” orders Pierce.

They just get him onto the table when he goes back into V.-Fib.

“V.-Fib.! Roy, 400 watts!”

“1. 2. 3. 4. Hit him!”

“Clear!”

Pierce zaps him, and he goes into sinus rhythm.

“Dixie, start another IV with D5W, TKO,” orders Hawkeye.

“Yes, Doctor.”

“That was great work, guys,” Hawkeye says as they walk out of the room. “I think he’s gonna be just fine.”

“Thanks, Doc,” says Roy. “By the way, I’m Roy DeSoto, this is John Gage, and this is Mike Stoker, a paramedic trainee, and our Engineer at Station 51.”

Before Hawkeye can introduce himself to Stoker, the H.T. goes off.

“Station 51 – Man Down - 21608 Moneta Avenue. 2-1-6-0-8 Moneta Avenue. Cross street: West Carson. Ambulance is responding. Time out: 15:02.”

“Squad 51 responding from Rampart Emergency,” says Roy.

“Engine 51, 10-4. KMG365,” comes Cap’s voice.

“We’ll see you guys in a bit,” says Gage.

Roy just gets by the station when Sam Lanier’s voice comes over the radio.

“Station 51, ambulance arrived before you and decided to transport. After beginning transport, ambulance was involved in a crash with a drunk driver at Moneta and West Carson. Additional ambulance is responding. Time out: 15:10.”

“Station 51, 10-4,” says Cap. “Squad 51, Engine 51, come on in from the north side of the accident. We’ll cover the east side.”

“10-4, Cap,” replies Mike.

“Station 51, L.A.”

“Engine 51.”

“Station 51, continue communications on this incident on Tac 2.”

“Engine 51. Squad 51, do you copy?”

“10-4.”

“Station 51, switching to Tac 2.”

“Station 51.”

Squad 51 arrives just a minute after the engine.

“Roy, John,” yells Cap, “tend to the guy in the station wagon! Mike, see to the guys in the ambulance!”

“Right, Cap!” reply Roy, John, and Mike.

Roy is checking on the driver of the station wagon, while Gage is trying to pry the door open.

“Cap!” yells Roy. “Could you bring me an asbestos blanket? We’ve got a Code-F!”

“Here, Roy,” says Cap when he brings the blanket. “Tend to the living. You, too, John.”

“Sure thing, Cap.”

“L.A., Engine 51. Requesting police and coroner at our location. We have a Code-F.”

“Engine 51.”

“What have we got, Mike?” asks Roy.

“Just some cuts and bruises on the EMT’s, and the guy on the gurney complaining of back pain,” says Mike.

“I’ll get a backboard and the drug box,” says Gage.

Just as they get the back patient on the backboard, the ambulance arrives.

“I’ll ride in with him,” says Gage.

“You can come with me, Mike,” says Roy.

“Sure thing, Roy,” says an obviously disappointed Mike Stoker.

“On second thought, Mike, you can ride in with Johnny.”

“Whatever you say, Roy.”

When they get to the hospital, Dr. Morton takes the patient, and tells Roy, John, and Mike to go to the base station.

“Hey, Roy, John, Mike,” says Dr. Brackett. “Come on into the lounge. I’m sure you guys noticed the engine out front. We’ve got something for Mike. We’ve also got something for Roy and Johnny.”

“Whatever you say, Doc,” says Gage.

They walk into the lounge and see Dixie, Dr.’s Early, Pierce, and Hunnicutt, Cap, Marco, and Chet standing around.

“Hey, guys,” says Gage. “Here to arrest us?”

“Nope,” chuckles Cap. “We’ve got something for all three of you.”

“I’ll start with Mike,” says Dixie. “Mike, a couple of days ago, you talked to me about becoming a paramedic. I talked to Captain Stanley, who made a phone call for me. Where I’m getting is: If you’re going to be a Los Angeles County Paramedic, you’ve gotta dress like a Los Angeles County Paramedic.”

Dixie then presents Mike a new shirt, complete with a Los Angeles County Fire Department Paramedic patch.

“Go ahead and change into that, Mike,” says Cap. “We’ll wait.”

“Yes, Cap.”

Five minutes later, Mike walks back into the lounge.

“Welcome back, Mike,” says Cap. “Now, it’s my turn.

“The fire department has gone over both DeSoto’s and Gage’s records, and ––”

“Oh, boy,” groans Gage.

“And has decided to allow me to promote you two clowns, and Mike Stoker, to the rank of Lieutenant in the Los Angeles County Fire Department. Congratulations, guys.”

Cap gives a set of bugles to Dr. Brackett, and another set to Dr. Early. Cap keeps one set of bugles to pin on Mike.

“Once again, congratulations, Lieutenants.”

“Thanks, guys,” says Gage.

“Wait till I tell Joanne,” says Roy.

“I expect better things from you guys,” says Cap.

“Don’t worry, Cap,” says Gage. “You can expect to see more from the three of us.”

“That’s what I’m afraid of.”

…TO BE CONTINUED…





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