Monday, September 12, 2011

Get in the boat!

The recent flooding in the northeast reminds us of a regular problem in such incidents; the refusal of some people to heed evacuation warnings. They wait until it is too late and then call 911, forcing emergency responders to risk their lives unnecessarily.

One story I've heard, and I'm sure the same or similar conversations were conducted hundreds of times this past week, went like this. A rescue boat pulls up to an isolated residence with a couple of occupants who ignored earlier evacuation orders.

Responder 1: You need to leave now. We're not sure we'll be able to get back in to get you if you don't.

Occupant 1: We'll be fine and you can't make us leave. (This is just one of the myriad responses, most dependent upon the blood alcohol content of the occupant.)

Responder 2 then hands Occupant 1 a pen.

Responder 2: Okay, then write your name and age on your arms.

Occupant 1 and 2 together: Why?

Responder 2. So we'll know who you are when we pull your bodies out after this is over.

The occupants got in the boat.

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