Category Archives: Medical

Avoiding the Dangers in a Chemical Suicide Response

On Monday in Boston, a BU pharmacology grad student committed suicide by lethal chemical.  Police and Fire department personnel responding to the apartment at 676 Massachusetts Ave. were in danger from highly toxic sodium azide, which has effects similar to cyanide.  Four police officers and two EMT’s were taken to the hospital for exposure to the chemical. I had just written an article on April 2 about a dangerous malathion suicide attempt, where first responders needed medical attention.  Last June, I wrote an article for BlueSheepdog called Chemical Suicides–A Safe Response.  I thought it very important to post that article on ThinBlueFlorida for obvious officer safety reasons. Police officers respond … Continue reading

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Reminder in Margate of the Danger of Suicide and Chemicals

An incident in Margate, FL yesterday is a good reminder for first responders to be wary of the presence of chemicals in suicide attempts.  A Coconut Creek man apparently attempted suicide by drinking the commercially available pesticide Malathion.  EMS workers arrived his home at about 0130 am to find him in his yard. When the man was transported to Northwest Medical Center in nearby Margate, he vomited up the chemical in the rescue unit and cause three paramedics to suffer dizziness, nausea, and headaches. At the Northwest ER, toxic fumes could still be smelled on the man.  He was isolated and the ER was shut down.  The Broward County Sheriff’s … Continue reading

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Tactical Combat Casualty Care Training for Police Officers

Last week, I attended my department’s annual forty-hour In-Service training block.  The final day had instruction to which I had not been exposed in many years of police work:  an introduction to Tactical Combat Casualty Care. What has always been in the trunk of the cop car?  A first aid kit.  What was it useful for?  Not much really.  Antiseptic, band-aids, and some Ibuprofen are far from helpful in a real live trauma emergency when rounds may be flying. The concept of TCCC (Tee-Triple-Cee) began with a 1996 paper that was published in Military Medicine.  U.S. Special Operations Command ran with the ideas and methods and slowly began implementing TCCC … Continue reading

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