Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Not straightforward

A while back we attended to a lady late at night who was complaining of abdominal pain. She had had an accident earlier in the day, but had adamantly refused treatment and transport by the attending crew.

We arrive at scene, and find an emotional woman sitting in a chair on the front patio. She stands up, tells us about the accident, and describes where the pain is - upper hip bone area, right where the lap section of the  seatbelt goes across.

And then she pulls down her pants to show us the bruising.

Hmm...not what I had expected, but we both look away and ask her if she could please pull her trousers back up, the sooner the better. She doesn't know if she should go to hospital or not, but we encourage her to get checked out.

At hospital, they breathalyze her for a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) reading - which, you guessed it, comes back as well above the legal limit. Upon being asked about drinking, she replies she had a couple to drink after she got home from the accident. Fair enough; but is that the truth? Was she in fact under the influence of alcohol during the accident? The police did not attend (why I do not know, apparently it happened at a busy intersection), and she refused transport. Possibly she wanted to avoid the authorities.

Conspiracy or not, it opened my eyes to the possibilities, and to get the cops involved if there is any doubt at all. Drink Driving is not something that should be taken lightly. Go harm yourself if you absolutely must (although I would recommend seeking psychiatric help instead), but leave others out of it.