June 19, 1996
‘Scenarios’ train EMS volunteers, By Sheryl Smith-Rodgers
“Valerie, Valerie, can you hear me honey? Open the window Valerie! Open the window!”
Banging frantically on the car window, the man implores the young girl inside to respond. With her head and shoulders bent over the car’s steering wheel, Valerie remains motionless.
An ambulance rushes to the scene and brakes smoothly to a halt. Out jumps a woman dressed in an official-looking, bright orange shirt. Another emergency crew member follows behind her. “Is she your daughter sir?” the woman asked the panicked man, and he nods mutely. “I think we’re going to have to reach her this way,” the woman calmly says, opening a rear passenger door.
As the two EMS technicians render aid to the young girl, her father stands nearby- and then crumbles silently to the ground.
If you were one of those two EMT’s what would you do now?
Ten area volunteers who are training to become certified emergency medical technicians had to quickly ponder that dilemma and many others Saturday during an intensive, seven-hour training session at Dean’s Tire & Auto south of Blanco.
Instructed by paramedics Bill Watson of Johnson City and Jack Paine of Blanco, the training depicted five emergency scenarios with “real” injured victims.”One scenario was hazardous waste,” Paine said. “A tank truck turned over and was leaking acetone. With each scenario, we just kept adding more and more passengers into the car. The EMT’s then had to do triage and decide who they were able to save.”
“Overall, they performed pretty well,” Paine said. “For a first time out, you make a lot of mistakes, but that’s typical. They did typical, if not better. They’re a bright class.”
The students will take their state exams July 23. Those who pass will become certified EMTs.
Presently, the Blanco Volunteer Ambulance Corps has five paramedics, six intermediates and 11 EMTs. August’s graduating class will add six more EMTs to the Blanco roster.
Blanco volunteers presently studying to become EMTs are Mike and Tina Pippen, Aaron Posey, and Russell Mica. Christy Ledbetter and Laura Hohenberger, who live between Blanco and Johnson City, will serve both cities. Johnson City volunteers are Carlene Hale and Jennifer Crider. Two Wimberley residents were also a part of Saturday's training.