blog engineOne of my 101 things your Fire Department wishes you knew widget is one about lying to me.  I do this all day long, I have seen it all and what you’re saying isn’t stirring the kool aid.

Oh how I love to have these kinds of conversations with my clients.


Just like you saw in Episode 1 of CoEMS, Chest pain at the pay phone.


Although our company is most often in quarters when the bells ring, we were on our way home from shopping this particular morning and it was raining.

When the call came in we were amazed we were not only a block away, but could see the pay phone in question.  But alas, there is no one at the phone to receive my assessment.  But he saw us alright.

You see, the pay phone does not have shelter from the rain, but the gas station across the street does and he’s running as fast as his little legs can get him, almost getting hit by cars as he goes, and dives into the dirt and bushes near the edge of the gas station, amidst a number of recyclables.

We pull up and exit, wondering why he ran, but knowing why.

“Sir! Sir, did you call 911 just now?” I ask.

He remains still, curled up into the fetal position and holding his eyes shut tightly.

“We saw you run from the phone to here, we know you’re awake.”


At least we’re not in the rain.  I suggest to the officer that we better have the police dog come by and make sure this man is alright, something I’ve always wanted to try, but the opportunity never presented itself.

Knowing how I think the Officer lifted the radio to his mouth, but didn’t key the mic.

“Yeah control, we need the K9 unit at this location,”

“NO DOGS!” He’s awake and shouting at us.

“Hi there, did you call 911 from that pay phone?” I ask noting he is in no distress I can see.

“I need my medications, they were st-I took them all.  All at once, I need a psych hold.” His mouth is racing faster than his mind and all the magic words come flying out in one quick blurb.


He refuses the free ride to a shelter we provide and also refuses to tell me where he is from, “Here” is how I know him to be lying, and he insists he took all his medicine at once in an attempt to hurt himself.  But this is when a good practitioner goes down that road, because you never really know.

“What did you take?”

“Morphine, a lot of morphine.”

“How much is a lot?” Comes the voice of the transport unit, now approaching from over his shoulder, listening to the conversation.

“1600 milligrams.”

I would be lying if I said we all kept a straight face.

“I’m sorry, I didn’t get that.  Could you repeat it please?”

“I took 23 60 milligram capsules, I could drop dead any minute.”

Gathering my composure, and watching the others do the same, I asked him when he took all these super morphine capsules and his answer will not surprise you.


After 5 minutes of trying to convince him to get into a shelter, the transport unit decided there was no way to rule out the ingestion so away they went.

We gathered our things and went back in service just in time to catch a run for someone who needed ALS interventions right away.  And that’s no lie.

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