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The Worst Call you have ever been on?

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  • #61
    This one's easy. It gives me the chills even though it was over 20 years ago. I was a rookie in a volunteer fire department on Long Island, New York. My department was close to the city limits and we ran a lot of building and house fires back then. On this one particular fire there was a missing child about 18 months old or so. When we arrived there was already heavy fire showing from the second floor. To make a long story short , after several failed attempts we could not find the child due to the heavy fire conditions. Being new, I was the "can man" overhauling and hitting the hot spots.
    I lifted a charred door to cool a hot spot when to my partners horror he noticed the body of the missing child stuck to the back of the door I was holding. I'll never forget his face. The door had fallen on the crib concealing the child from the search team.

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    • #62
      My worst call was when I was working in Dispatch and my wife, who was also working with me, we got several 911 calls for a mva-entrapment and one vehicle was on fire.

      the reporting party on the phones were hysterical that they were watching a man screaming for help as he burnt up and that they couldnt get him. I had to reassure them that there was nothing they could do and it was ok. I asked about the other vehicle and they said there was a man and a woman dead in the car. When the trooper got on scene, he read the license plate of the car with the two victims and it was my parnter for 8 yrs on the ambulance corps that I was with. I was stunned and I couldnt tell the other responders who it was because they all knew him too.

      Being in Dispatch and dispatching to that call made me feel so helpless that I couldnt be there. We had a CISD and I drank heavily for a week, but I am doing better with it now, so is the rest of the department.

      I have found that being a Dispatcher is just as stressfull, sometimes more, than being in the trenches. Just remember all that the dispatchers are also involved in the call and they are "first on scene".

      Stay safe out there everyone.

      Sean Corrigan
      Fire Captain and Dispatcher
      Seward Fire Department

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      • #63
        A couple of Sundays ago. About 6 pm. Had a call for a shed fire. Later was reported three full codes. Upon arrival discovered none were older than 7 years. The two asst. chiefs had arrived already and were doing cpr with some neighbors. Brought one back, other two children passed on. All were flown out via LifeNet.
        Turns out kids had been playing with a lighter in a shed. Caught some cardboard on fire. One of the kids went to get a bucket of water, and shut the latch behind him. Locked all three kids inside. Fire was out when we arrived. I'll never ever forget that sight.

        ------------------
        Mike

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        • #64
          I have been a fire fighter for two years now and an EMT for about 5 months. Last year around Christmas time we were dispatched to an overturned tractor at a residence. The person riding the tractor (large farm tractor) was killed by the weight of the tractor. This was my very first fatal call. Luckily - and I thanked God for this - there was no blood, etc. He was simply pinned underneath and my truck was released before they got the tractor off him. The next day I found out that he was my best friend's fiance's friend. I felt horrible. Then this past week I am at the firehouse loading hose with some of the guys and we get toned out for a Major MVA with possible entrapment of two victims. As we are leaving the station it comes back as one victim has been pulled out and is being given CPR by a bystander, and that both appear unconcious. Right then I knew it was not good. We got there and both were DOA. The worst part was that as we were pulling up - we were first on scene - I could see a baby seat in the back seat of this car that had been wrapped around a tree and bent almost in half. I was thinking that this was gonna be the hardest thing I ever had to do. Fortunately there was no child. Unfortunately both of the victims didn't make it and they both had two small children too young to be able to remember their daddy's. And this happened a few day before Father's Day. Again, someone I know came to the scene and it turned out to be her nephew that was driving.

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          • #65
            A 2 car motor vehicle accident with one car fully involved and you didn't know there was anyone inside until you got the fire knocked down. The smell of their burnt bodies and having to help the coroner put them into a body bag, gave me nightmares for awhile.

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            • #66
              I will relate two tales for ya. First I was about six or seven years old on this particular autumn night eating dinner with the family when the tones go off for a signal car accident on the hill. My father takes off out the door and we go about the rest of the evening worrying when he will be getting home. I later learn that the vehicle is stuck in a large oak tree and had caught fire totally burning every thing inside including the driver, before the fire dept was on the scene. My father was one of the crew to place the remains in a body bag and onto the cot. He said the body was so badly burnt that no one could identify it. About this time a county cop, with the fire chief, came up to my father and told him to sit down. The plates on the car came back registered to his father and the watch that was on the body was the one given to his father upon his retirement from the fire dept.

              Now for my worse call. Eighteen months after I joined the dept. becoming the third generation of volunteer firefighter in the family, I got called out for a MVA with one car in the creek. Upon arrival my crew was assigned to the vehicle in the creek. The closer we get to the car the more I think I know the car. What we found was a body sitting in the driver’s seat but it was its head, and after cutting him out of the car we had the unpleasant task of finding the rest of him. There were four of us so we split up into two groups, after searching the creek bank, and started searching each side of the creek down stream. After walking for over a mile in a creek, it had been raining all day and the creek was up, we finally found my best friend’s head stuck in a brush pile. He had been at a party and tried to drive home drunk.

              Thanks to the hardest Chief I have ever known he would not let me quit! He stayed on my *** until I got the help I needed to get through that part of my life and to learn from it!
              The hardest fire to put out is the one that can be avoided by educating the public!

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