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EMS News in Focus
by Arthur Hsieh

Chaotic ice rescue video gives me the creeps

Clip is a prime example of folks wanting to do the right thing but unprepared and untrained to do so

By Arthur Hsieh

Watching this video gave me the creeps.

It's a prime example of folks wanting to do the right thing but unprepared and untrained to do so.

It's also a lesson to learn regarding the risks taken by public safety providers when conducting technical rescues. 

In a previous column, I mentioned how important it was to size up the scene for safety hazards, as well as any clues to what was happening at the moment.

The more panicked people are, the calmer and slower we have to proceed in order to stay above the chaos.

In this instance, perhaps the wiser move would be to make sure the victim stays afloat, long enough for trained personnel to pull him out of the water safely.

The rescue effort becomes much more difficult when multiple victims are involved. 

This video serves as a reminder that we should be prepared to respond to these types of incidents. Public awareness should be part of that preparation.

Help your community to stay safe this winter!

About the author

EMS1 Editorial Advisor Art Hsieh, MA, NREMT-P currently teaches at the Public Safety Training Center, Santa Rosa Junior College in the Emergency Care Program. Since 1982, Art has worked as a line medic and chief officer in the private, third service and fire-based EMS. He has directed both primary and EMS continuing education programs. Art is a textbook author, has presented at conferences nationwide, and continues to provide patient care at an EMS service in Northern California. Contact Art at
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