Had a paranoid-schizo on a hold for ripping up bushes in front of his apartment complex wearing not but a smile. During the 3 hour transport (due to traffic), he asked to see his bag of belongings. He'd been pretty well behaved, so I complied since there was only a sweater and some paperwork in it. When he found that his cigarettes had apparently been taken, he went ballistic!
So we were forced to stop on the 215, in Riverside, middle of afternoon traffic, and try to restrain the guy. We eventually had to call for CHP assistance since he was so PO'd. Finally got him to calm down enough after he broke two compartment sliders and one of the handrails on the gurney.
Lesson be learned, ER docs: never take the cigarettes of a 5150.
I have one to add. I can't remember exactly what we were originally paged out for. Maybe a laceration? Regardless it never indicated that it might be a violent scene. It was dark and there we no street light on the road, the street the patient lived on was just wide enough for the ambulance, defiantly not wide enough to turn around. We did not realize the street also was a dead end. We parked and approached the house; the wife was waiting she told us nothing more than her husband had cut his hand and was in their room. We knocked, announced who we were and that we were there to help him. He responded by yelling and throwing things. Like any good medics we retreated to our truck and notified dispatch of what was happening and they called for police assistance. It was Friday night and it was very busy for the police, it took them 45 yes 45 minutes to get to us! In town! We tried to drive away to stage for the police only to find out that the road did dead end and there was no where to turn around. The only option was to drive as far as we could down the dead end street, turn off all the lights and wait or to try backing out. Before we could back the patient found us and approached the driver’s side of the truck, we locked the doors and had the windows up, he began pounding on the window and asking us how we could just sit there and let him bleed to death. His cut was about 1/4 of an inch across and the depth of a paper cut. We tried to calm him and assure that we would soon help him and this just made him angrier. The police finally arrived only to find themselves faced with a guy who then decided to act like an angel! The cop was very irratated with us and he thought that we were crazy for calling. He did not believe that the patient was ever violent. The whole experience sucked. So I guess the big lesson here is never get trapped! Always have a way out. And if you think a street might dead end check it out first or get yourself turned around to face the exit.
Here's some crazy stuff for you...and I average about 8-10 fist fights a year myself here in Detroit.
We have had Medics that have been shot, shot at, stabbed, in knock down drag out fist fights and spit at.
One of our own was shot in the line of duty as he was robbed in quarters.
A couple of weeks ago, one of our own was stabbed in the arm by a man that claimed to be "sick."
I had an intoxicated man spit in my eyes...I spent in excess of an hour getting the Morgan Lens treatment and a year's worth of blood draws. (I dislocated the man's jaw...Former Army here.)
2 weeks ago, a man that requested our services decided that when asked what was bothering him medically, the man decided to strike the Medic in the chest and began to swing violently on him. (Unfortunately for him, the Medic is a former Marine and it ended badly for the patient who ended up with a decent head injury.)
A few years back, a psych patient kicked one of our Medics in the knee causing his Patella to become completely pulverized. The patient turned on his partner and his partner defended himself. The end result was that his partner was a former boxer and struck the psych patient 2 times and the patient was in a coma for 3 weeks and then died. (The partner was cleared in the death.)
Last fall as my partner and I responded up the street from our quarters to assist another crew that was hit by a drunk driver. As we were talking with the crew to make sure they weren't injured, a van drove up on us and began firing a a pistol at us...the very next evening, somebody drove past our firehouse and opened fire on it.
Almost every week our members are assaulted physically and verbally. The best advice I can offer anyone is to be alert at all times no matter where you are. Any situation can turn violent on any scene and violence is up against EMS professionals everywhere no matter if you work in an Urban, Suburban or Rural setting.