Being prepared for the worst

Dr. Lee inside the MCI Locker
Dr. Lee inside the MCI Locker

Antarctica is a harsh continent.  The winter residents here at McMurdo prepare for the worst several times during the year by performing Mass Casualty Incident (MCI) drills.  Because we are isolated and cannot depend on any outside assistance, we are all interdependent upon each other for survival.  At the beginning of the winter season, we were all given a survey to provide input on any relevant training we may have for such an occurance.  People were also given the opportunity to sign up to be part of the walking blood bank as well as volunteer for tasking if an incident occurs.  If an event happens, I’ll be working in dispatch with Wes and Marsha, so Iwould be unable to do any of the extra taskings.  Some of the other tasks include:

  • Stretcher bearers – Pretty self explanatory
  • Recorders – People that basically stick with the medical department personnel and record everything that goes on
  • Runners – People that pass along information between all of the different groups involved in the incident
  • SAR – Search and Rescue team
  • EOC – Emergency Operation Center
  • HASTY team – Transportation
  • MedAux Triage
  • MedAux First Aid
  • MedAux Blood Bank
  • MedAux Xray
  • Security

    Wes and I
    Wes and I

On March 14th, there was a mock medical set up for an MCI event.  In the event of an MCI, the Firehouse becomes Primary medical and the “hospital” becomes secondary but all of the seriously injured patients will go there.  All vehicles are removed from the bay and the town will come over and set things up to prepare for patients.  This time, since there was no actual event, the fire department personnel helped with the set up of the event. 

Prepping the bay
Prepping the bay

Attached are a few pictures from the drill.  I didn’t take these shots, these were taken by Melanie Troftgruben. 

Melanie playing the victim
Melanie playing the victim


Lt. LaPointe giving instructions on loading the stretcher into the ambulance
Lt. LaPointe giving instructions on loading the stretcher into the ambulance

Stay safe and warm!

Published by Victoria

Hello! I'm a so-so photographer, okay writer, former 911 telecommunicator and world's best Aunt. Closing in on 40, I find myself at a point in my life where I have no idea what I want to do next. I'm currently spending summer 2021 in Texas with my boyfriend, Robert and helping him start building a plane before he goes back to Antarctica in August.

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