Thursday, 15 May 2008


I have close working experience with the police, ambulance service and fire brigade. I have come to appreciate the essential role each of these services play in keeping our world free from harm. I have recently noticed that there are many documentaries on tv about the police and ambulance service. I have only seen one documentary that gave a segment to the fire brigade. So this entry is for our brethren who face the flame.

A car overturns on the M6,
the ambulance has arrived however they can not proceed until the fire service have secured the area. Civilians look on wondering at the inaction of the paramedics and emt's.
The fire service arrive.
They secure the vehicle and provide the ambulance crew access to the casualty.
The casualty is clear.
Some spark ignites the pooled petrol on the ground.
Had the fire service not been there the ambulance crew, casualty and any one foolish enough to stop would have been seriously injured.

These men and women provide a service and are in general wholey unrecognised by the general public. Their bravery is shrugged off with mutterings of 'well its what they're paid to do isnt it'.

Recently Tom Reynolds of Random Acts of Reality spoke on the radio about an incident in scotland. A paramedic was at the scene of a stabbing, on her own and without any immediately accessible police support she was ordered not to proceed. Many fools out there consider her a coward for this. She was not trained or equipped to deal with an armed assailant. The casualty died. Fortunately for her family and every life she will ever save, the paramedic is still with us.

I saw a segment on the tv today about the fire service. A gas cylinder on a building site was leaking ignited gas. Rather than proceed the lead fireman performed a grueling but essential series of risk assessments. Once all the equipment and information was at hand he took the 20 steps forward and turned the gas off. It may seem like a lot of fuss for nothing, but that mans family still have a father, and son and husband. Even with the information and risk assessments he was incredibly brave to walk up to a leaking gas cylinder that had been recently spewing flame.

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