First Day Back

*Parody, not to be taken seriously!
Uniform st. 1st day back

It is no secret that EMTs, Paramedics and Firefighters work long hours. Four days on and four days off is a common schedule. The four working days can be difficult without proper planning. You never know what you will come back to after your “four off.”

I’ve perfected my first day back routine to make certain that my shift goes as smoothly as possible.  It is imperative that I follow my own rigid system. I am, after all, in charge of an Advanced Life Support vehicle in a busy urban fire department; nothing can be left to chance. First things first…

The Apparatus

If the apparatus is in the bay:

Messy Ambulance
Facebook/Funny Emergency Calls

Patients vomit, urinate, shit themselves and bleed on everything.  That’s okay, it comes with the territory. The night shift’s feet, farts, body odor and assorted fast food wrappers and spillage are the true Haz-Mat concern, and the residue must be addressed before occupying the rescue vehicle. Standard operating procedures need to be deployed:

1) Open all doors to allow previous shift’s “aroma” to dissipate

2) Activate ventilation vans front and back

3) Thoroughly spray cab area with disinfectant

4) Use of PPE (personal protective equipment) strongly recommended during decon

If the apparatus is not in the bay:

Fantastic, the night crew is on a run; proceed to quarters and begin the nap cycle.

sleeping emt

Radio Check

1) Remove “70’s Disco Hits” CD from slot

2) Reprogram pre-set stations from Easy Listening and Sports Talk to Rock, Hard Rock, Harder Rock, Rock Hard Rock and Country (for those moments you forgot you have a heart)

3) Adjust volume and settings accordingly. Bust it, when your song comes on.

The Drug Box

With a long shift ahead the proper medications are imperative.

  • Aspirin…check
  • Ibuprofen…check
  • Alka-Seltzer…check
  • Tums…check

The Equipment

Still there; revert to inactive status until tour is over

The rest of the routine is here…

Thanks for reading, and following the link!


  • Mike Chisholm says:

    Another great post Capt. Thanks for the laughs

  • Pat Blackman says:

    Michael, you have not lost your touch. 🙂 PS. Last time I rode in one of your “cadillacs”, I was a pretty good girl. I only vomited a little bit. The blood stayed in a contained area. Aren’t you proud of me? LOL. PS I thanked Stephanie and the other EMT too. Take care Buddy. Awaitig your next post.

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