This is the official blog of ex-Sgt Ellie Bloggs. I was a real live police constable then sergeant for twelve years, on the real live front line of England. I'm now a real live non-police person. All the facts I recount are true, and are not secrets. If they don't want me blogging about it, they shouldn't do it. PS If you don't pay tax, you don't (or didn't) pay my salary.

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Thursday, October 12, 2006

Call me a Panda.

Two o'clock, Monday afternoon. I am tucking into a free latte provided by the friendly local garage and trying to finish a statement which should be hand-written in an irritating booklet that is hard to photocopy, but which I have decided to type as no one in the entire legal system apart from my sergeant actually cares which way I do it.

"PC Bloggs, can you attend the High Street. Ambulance asking for assistance with a violent male."

I do not know about other areas, but I imagine that, like in Blandmore, police generally try to provide speedy attendance for other emergency services especially if they are in trouble. It is partly camaraderie and partly a hope that the same will be returned (particularly when it comes to waiting in A&E).

I consider waiting to scoop the chocolate off the top of the latte, but duty calls and I race to the scene with all the blue kit fired up. I see two paramedics (both considerably bigger and maler than me, I might add - yes, yes I know it isn't their job), and TD (the Town Drunk). TD is sitting on a bench with his head in his hands, the paramedics are stood either side of him peering at a minuscule cut on his temple.

PC Bloggs: Er... you called?
Paramedic: TD's fallen down again.
PC Bloggs: Is he ok?
Paramedic: He's fine, just a bump. We're not taking him in.
PC Bloggs: Good... Um... you called?
Paramedic: We took him home last night.
PC Bloggs: Good show. Well done.
Paramedic: He can't walk.
PC Bloggs: Terrible. The perils of alcoholism.
Paramedic: He'll fall again.
PC Bloggs: I imagine that is a strong possibility.
Paramedic: Well... we'll leave you to it.

I approach TD and establish he is beyond sozzled, in that he thinks I am his brother. I also establish that he wants to go home more than anything in the big wide world.

PC Bloggs: Shall I call you a cab, TD?
TD: I got no money, broth.
PC Bloggs: I am female.
TD: Take us home, broth.
PC Bloggs: No.
TD: Please.
PC Bloggs: No.
TD: I'm about to be sick.
PC Bloggs: You're not selling me.

The paramedics are still lurking and exchange shrugs with me, as if to say, "You aren't just going to leave the poor man there, are you?"

PC Bloggs: I'm not a taxi, you know.
Paramedic: Nor are we.
PC Bloggs: Why did you call us, by the way? Something about violence?
Paramedic: It's your turn to take him home. We've had enough.

And they drive off. I leave TD sitting there, but he is wobbling backwards and forth like a skittle. In the end I fear he will fall, hit his head and die, and I will be suspended and have all my clothing seized. I take him home. On the way to the car, he falls from my shoulder and hits his head. Hoorah, I call the ambulance back and leave them to it.

There are ways to get a lift home from the police, by the way. Here are some of the phrases that work:
  1. My girlfriend's just kicked me out following a fight. I'm just going to hang around here and wait until you've gone, then go back in there and smack her.
  2. I've just been abducted and dumped in a country lane.
  3. It's dark and I think someone is following me.
  4. I've just been raped (if you don't mind going via the medical suite).
  5. Ooh, Mr Policeman you have such a shiny car. Please may I get in it with my long non-Chav-like legs and mini-skirt?
Copyright of PC Bloggs


Blogger ExtraSpecialCopper said...

Sounds all too familier!

12 October, 2006 22:18

Anonymous Cathi said...

I know this isn't the point of your post (keep up the great work btw), but....chocolate on a latte? Horrors!! What has become of Blighty I wonder. I dunno, leave a country for ten years and look what happens.

Not a proper latte then. Sounds like a cappucino to me.

Do you pronounce it "latty" or even "lac'y" with the glottal stop? I love hearing that on UK TV shows. Or perhaps more pretentiously (like we in NZ do) - "LAHtay"??

Vive la difference

13 October, 2006 02:26

Anonymous Anonymous said...

OK - you're a panda...happy now?

13 October, 2006 02:30

Blogger Calabar Gal said...

He he he!!
You will not be the death of me PC BLoggs!!

13 October, 2006 14:51

Blogger PC South West said...

Most parademics are cool in our area. But I remember going to one of those type of jobs where they recon the injured party will be violent.
The words from one paramedic was "I DON'T GE PAID TO BE ASSAULTED, THAT'S YOUR JOB".
Like I ****** do.

13 October, 2006 17:08

Anonymous Dave said...

I was always told never to take a drunk home. If you do, and they die (in a pool of their own vomit after you have laid them on their own sofa) then they have effectively died straight after leaving your custody which is NEVER a good thing.

So I refuse to take them. And if the Paramedics wont take them, then I leave them there. I usually find they have crawled away after a couple of hours.

13 October, 2006 17:57

Anonymous NorthernPC said...

Our local ones have recently started the 'we'll stand off til police arrive' for more or less everything. Standing off as far as I can tell means sitting in the ambulance around ten miles away. Useful.

We are also getting sent to jobs and being asked to assess whether or not an ambulance is needed and what the problem is. Sorry, but if I see blood etc I am going to require an ambulance. We don't get trained to be paramedics/ambulance staff because we are not paramedics.

I have loads of respect for them but fail to see why their management don't make more provisions for their safety. We can't follow them to every job, we just don't have the staff.

13 October, 2006 18:54

Anonymous justacop said...

Get along fine with our paramedics, they do a good job BUT I am starting to get a little fed up with their control rooms.

northernpc has touched upon this. What is actually happening is that we are becoming first response because there are less ambulance crews. We are being dispatched to incidents with the remotest hint of violence, or because there is a remote hint of drug use. This is not because of any problem for their crews, it is so we can provide the first response, and if necessary, treatment. Thus, we are not only expected to bail out an under resourced pollice service, add the ambulance service to the growing list which includes prisons, and in the past the fire brigade.

14 October, 2006 15:25

Anonymous Anonymous said...

If it's not on fire just call the police :-)

15 October, 2006 12:12

Blogger Stacey said...

In the town where I work as a paramedic their used to be a rule that if we needed help lifting we were to call the police for help before we called the fire deparment. I laughed when I was first informed of that policy. I was like "ummm guys don't you think the cops might be a little busy doing cop stuff?"

If we get a call for someone who may potentially be violent dispatch tells us to "stage for law inforcment" (which means sitting in our ambulance a mile away) Some people take the "staging till the scene is safe" thing a little to seriously. Here is an example (I am not kidding):

Dispatch: Dispatch to **** Ambulance go to 123 anystreet for a 3 year old male, head injury from an assult. Per patients mother he assailent is the patients 4 year old brother.

**** Ambulance: Dispatch we recieve that call. Please send law. We are going to stage for law enforcment.

Dispatch: **** Ambulance. Did you copy that the asailent is FOUR YEARS OLD???

**** Ambulance: We copied that. But we are not going in until the scene is secure.

So the state police were dispatched to "secure the scene" because some idiot was scared of a four year old.

16 October, 2006 01:17

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