I lost my right hand!


I got to participate in a Mass Casualty Exercise the other day.  It was really fun and pretty crazy to be a part of.

The scenario was like this:  A fuel truck was traveling from Scott Base (the New Zealand base near by) to McMurdo when it sprung a small leak.  The driver stopped the vehicle to check it out.  At that time, a shuttle bus came zipping around the corner and slammed into the truck expelling the 12 shuttle passengers out of the vehicle and down the side of a hill.  The driver and passenger of the fuel truck were also ejected.  Through out the entire process, all radio transmissions had to begin and end with “this is an exercise”. 

Now I was assigned one of the more interesting injuries.  My right hand was lopped off at the wrist and I was hysterical, emotionally upset, and in severe pain.  They used masking tape to tape up my fist and then used fake blood to give me a bloody stump.  The other injuries ranged from death, impalement, punctured lungs, and hypothermia among other things. 

As the fire crews pulled up, it was my job to run around screaming and looking for my hand.  It was pretty fun.  One member of the fire crew asked for all people that could walk to make their way up to the ambulance.  I, of course, was hysterical, and I continued to wonder around looking for my hand.  A woman came down and tried to help me up the hill, but I refused and had to be pulled up (screaming all the while).  They bandaged up my stump and put me in the ambulance.  They rushed me back to the fire house (the emergency medical area) where I was ushered in and put on a stretcher.  I continued to play it up and ask if anyone had found my hand.  They pumped me full of morphine and I started to calm down.  I basically stayed on the stretcher for the rest of the drill while the doctors/nurses/volunteers/fire fighters calmed me down by asking me questions and keeping pressure on my wound. 

I was really glad that I got to help out and learn what would happen in an actually emergency like that. Plus, it was kind of like when Luke Skywalker got his hand chopped off by Darth Vader. An 8 year old’s dream come true!


I’ve also uploaded a few more photos from the Andrill drilling site, Carl’s birthday, and other stuff.

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