Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Lorain County Emergency Management


Robert and I decided we needed to be trained in Emergency Management for our county. The county association was offering this course...6 Tuesdays in a row...4 hours each night, from 6-10pm. Now those hours are what really get to me since that's about the time I'm starting to shut down for the night. But this gave me the chance to spend 4 hours each Tuesday with Robert (and 20 other people) for 6 weeks. He's gone a lot of nights so this seemed to work. Plus I have always enjoyed working in my community so it only seemed natural. I have no children in our rookery anymore and really could use an activity.

The class seems to be well organized with very educated and trained instructors. And from what we learned last week, Lorain county is really in need of a group of people trained to fill in for the professionals should an emergency occur. Did you know that Lorain was the #1 county in Ohio for total number of tornadoes and tornado deaths in the 100 years (primarily because of the wicked twister that took out Lorain in 1924 which storm, by the way, started my grandmother in labor and hence my mom was born on the 4th of July that year)? We also have the largest east-west railway transportation corridor of hazardous materials. We are also in very close proximity to the New Madrid Faultline. We have David Besse ( to the west) and Perry Nuclear Plan (to the east {or is it visa versa}). We also have 700 facilities which use and store and manufacture hazardous materials. Didn't Robert always tell people we live in Paradise? Now you know why (jk).

So we have begun the learning process. Last night we had TRIAGE and the 3 KILLERS drilled into our heads for close to 4 hours. I think my biggest problem is going to be remembering all the symptoms of shock. I just looked it up to post and think this might help.

Diagnosing Shock

The most common symptoms of shock include:

  • An extremely low blood pressure
  • Fast but weak pulse
  • Dizziness, faintness or light-headedness
  • Feeling weak or nauseous
  • Moist, clammy skin
  • Profuse sweating
  • Unconsciousness
  • Rapid, shallow breathing
  • Feeling anxious, agitated or confused
  • Chest pain
  • Blue lips and fingernails
I know to give that victim a RED tag should the moment arrive when I have to triage but for the class, we are given scenarios and have to quickly decide what color tag to put on them (Green because they are ambulatory and are basically OK. Yellow for delayed because they might just be in pain but do not require immediate attention. Red for IMMEDIATE attention. And black of course for DEAD. I think I can handle the dead part, or at least recognize it...thanks Hospice training and service). I was one of the last 3 to be given the oral scenario and didn't pick the correct color...because I missed the shock symptom. But sadly, I had all the other 19 scenarios correct. But again...if this class was ONLY in the morning, I'd be acing it. So for me, a lot of my studying is going to be done at home, in advance of the class. I need to memorize and make my head think fast, rather than think "bed".

So that's where I'll be for the next 4 Tuesdays...should you happen to want to reach me. Call before 5:30 or the next day. Thank you very much.

It's also why I bought Robert a GPS system for his car and he's finally letting me give him a HAM radio for Christmas...something I've wanted to do since he got his license. He has a larger chain saw. We have our 72-hour+ kits. Naturally....and water....lots of water. Did you know that if you are starting treatment, and discover paradox something or other in the ribcage, you put one of the bottles of water on the one side in hopes of rectifying the situation TEMPORARILY. Good to know...something I didn't know before.

Well, luckily for future patients...I have plenty more lessons to learn, time to memorize, before I actually have to treat anyone. Personally, I think I'll direct traffic.

5 comments:

Kate said...

Sounds awesome! Darin really wanted to take this class but missed the sign up. Do you know if they'll be doing it again, or is this a one time thing?

Lin said...

I'm impressed...what is paradox? Paradise indeed for hazardous waste lovers....hmm. Good job of staying awake with all that learning-it isn't easy.

Benjamin said...

arghhh! That logo is killing me! But other then that...sounds great! Here's hoping you never have to put it into practice!

mom/caryn said...

WOW! I would LOVE to take a class like that. Especially if I could take it with Wayne so we could talk it over during the week and help each other remember what we'd learned.

I used to be the director of the Health and Safety Program for and American Red Cross for about a year. (It was something I was thrown into after funding for the HIV/AIDS program dried up) I was the director over all of those CPR classes in the Northern part of Utah... and I never could remember how to do it. I still don't know how to do the Heimlich or any of that stuff. I was so frustrating for my volunteer instructors!

Maybe it's a good thing I'm NOT taking this class. I'd hate to be responsible for some highly trained teacher jumping off a roof after class some night. But, I gotta hand it to ya! I think it's great that you're doing this!

Boom said...

How do you sign up? I think I did have similar training in the Army Reserves and Cub Scouts, but my pea brain has forgotten everything! I hate aging!

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