Friday, May 23, 2008

emergency response

This week saw the station go through its mass casualty incident (MCI) drill for the winter. This is a situation where there are (naturally) multiple patients, and the size of the response taxes the emergency response resources we have here on station. I'm the fire chief, and I was greatly hindered by poor radio quality when trying to talk to my firefighters inside the garage building down in one of the sub-ice arches. We even had to deal with one of our own firefighters going down (simulated), and had to rescue her in addition to the 3 patients that had been working in the garage. I got really cold, and actually got some very mild frost nip/bite on my fingers. It sure burned like the dickens when it thawed out. Then, the next day, late in the afternoon we had to respond to a real glycol leak in the power plant. That definitely got everybody's attention; even our chronic MIAs from the fire team showed up in bunker gear and SCBA.

The wind has been blowing pretty stiffly, for here, and it's amazing how quickly the drifts upwind of the station are expanding and growing upward. What once was a fairly flat slope is now probably a 10-foot high cliff you have to ascend/descend on the road to and from ARO. We even had the temperatures dip down to the mid -90s F, which does in fact feel different than -60F to -70F.

I hope you all have gone and seen the new Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull by now. I'd have been at a midnight showing on opening night if I were back in the World. We watched Temple of Doom a couple nights ago, and it is always fun to see these Lucas/Spielberg movies. It's similar to me reading "The Hobbit" and "The Lord of the Rings" every year; they never get old. Speaking of which, if they're filming the new Hobbit movies in New Zealand when I get off the Ice I may just have to go and try to land a part in the flicks. I think I'd make a great Bard (the eventual lord of Dale, of course), but I'd happily settle for an extra role as a dwarf or goblin.

"Black arrow! You've never failed me, and I've always recovered you. I had you from my father, and he from of old. If ever you came from the forges of the true King under the Mountain, go now and speed well!"
~Bard, The Hobbit-J.R.R. Tolkien

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