EMS Superbowl Memories

I was working the night of Superbowl XLII, when the Patriots played the Giants.  I am not a fan of either team, but was interested in seeing Tom Brady against Eli Manning.  As it happened we ran calls through the first half, and cleared the hospital slightly faster than we normally would to try to watch the second.  Driving through the hospital parking lot we discovered a woman attempting to change a flat tire on her car.  She appeared to be struggling to loosen the lug nuts with a tire iron, so we pulled over to help her.  Neither my partner nor I were able to get them to budge.  With our manliness insulted, I reluctantly walked back into the ED and asked a constable for help.  I was also hoping to pass this buck to someone else so that we could watch the game.

“Hi, there’s a women with a flat tire in the parking lot, can you give her a hand?” I asked.

He clapped. “There’s a hand. We’ll jump cars, but we don’t change tires.”

Really!? I was shocked.  The constables that that hospital are normally great, and I am sure that most of his coworkers would have helped right away.  I thought that we don’t change tires either, asshole, but we’re not going to drive past someone in our rolling paramedic billboard IN YOUR PARKING LOT without offering to help.  Apparently we was not concerned about that type of thing.

So I went to the charge nurse, who I have a good relationship with, and told her what happened.  She rolled her eyes and did not look surprised.  She directed me to one of the hospital’s facility staff members.  He was not working, but happened to be there with his mother who was a patient.  Unlike the constable, this guy was willing to change a tire for a stranger, when he was off the clock, while his mother was sick in the hospital.  He looked like a lumber jack, and I thought he would surely be able to get the tire off.

He and I returned to the car, but he was unable to get the tire loose either.  He returned to his shop in the hospital to get some tools, and while he was gone my partner and I chatted with woman who was stranded.  It turns out that she was an ED nurse at a hospital about an hour away, and was here visiting her sister who was admitted as a patient.  She told us that there was some construction debris on the parking ramp that she told the constable about when she came in.  Nothing was done about it, and happened to run over it on the way out.  I am sure that she had some interesting comments for her sister to make on the Press Ganey survey.

Our lumberjack returned with a pipe that he slipped over the tire iron, and was able to get the lug nuts loose.  The rest of the tire change went smoothly, and now she had an hour drive to make on a spare tire.  We gave her directions to a gas station in a safe area and wished her well.  Then we drove across the street to our station. The TV was on when we walked in the door, and I glanced up to see Eli Manning throw the game-winning touchdown pass to Palexico Burris with 35 seconds left in the game.  We didn’t get to see much of the game, but we did see the best part.



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