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Thread: What would you do?? #2

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    Member BucknRut's Avatar
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    Default What would you do?? #2

    This is another "be prepared" scenario for us to ponder...

    Suppose you get an urge to throw a few flies. You sneak out of work an hour early and drive to a secret spot on the river you've been wanting to try. You park your truck on the side of an old unfrequented dirt road you'd discovered on an earlier trip, grab your gear and head down a slow gradual embankment cluttered with rocks, boulders and brush. You are filled with excitement as you near the bottom, your footing lets loose, you slide downward. On your slide you disturb a rock, which breaks free a large boulder. You stop your slide and the boulder comes to rest on your leg, specifically your foot, ankle and halfway up your shin. You are on your back. You assume your foot/ankle/leg is broken, but have suffered no more apparent injuries other than scrapes and bruises from your fall. Your leg and foot is in much pain.

    Remember that you have snuck out of work! Nobody knows where you are, what you are doing or when to expect you home. You are dressed in normal riverwear, including waders, a vest, a sidearm and you still have all of your fishing gear except for your rod which was lost on the fall. There is NO electronic communication available.

    What do you do?

  2. #2

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    In such an unexpected situation its tough to say what I would at that point in time, especially with the adrenaline running like a track star while my mind is trying to collect its thoughts.

    With that said, I can only say what comes to mind while I am comfortably sitting in my recliner with a laptop in front of me.

    Depending how large the rock is I would try to move it by all means. I would look for a large stick to wedge under the rock and try to lift with my arms. At the same time I would try and push with my free leg and hope for the best.

    If that doesn’t work and the base below my leg is gravel maybe it would be possible to dig the ground from beneath my leg until I have enough room to wiggle the foot from beneath the rock.

    If this river is commonly visited I suppose I could wait for someone to show up, but as luck would have it I would be the only sole on the river that day. It works like that with me. Yelling to try and grab someone’s attention might be in order.

    Well, what else can you do beside cut your leg off?

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    I'd sit back and hope that I brought enough beer with me till help arrives.

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    Default The rest of the story...

    Okay, so I didn't get the responses I was hoping for here...maybe a little history will help.

    This is actually a TRUE STORY. I have read two accounts of similar situations people have been in and while it is not likely to happen to me or you, I sure would want to know how to survive if I were to encounter a similar situation.

    The details I posted are very close to what actually happened. Here's a few more I would like to add: He was unsuccessful at moving the boulder. He yelled, screamed, pried and pushed with no luck. He waited and waited (don't remember exactly how long). His only thoughts were that he was going to die out there and no one would ever know what happened to him. He then began to think about his family and the pain and suffering his wife and three daughters would go through trying to find him and trying to support themselves without him. His mind now suddenly went into “must do mode”.

    He decided that the only way he could make it out alive would be to cut off his leg. Gory, I know, but if you are staring death in the eye, life without a limb probably doesn’t sound that bad. Now what is the procedure to amputating your own limb? This is the blood and guts of where I am going with this…no pun intended.

    The man in this situation made a tourniquet(sp) and cinched it above his knee and began sliced around his knee area. He said when he saw the tissue inside, he went into what he called “shock” and then he felt little pain and just kept on until he was able to dismember his lower leg. He then stopped what bleeding he could and crawled his way to his truck and drove home…

    He lived legless…but he lived!

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    Default WG, good points...some more to think about

    Water Gremlin had some good points:

    Try to move the boulder...push, pull, pry with log, wedge a stone under and hammer it in with another...

    Try digging debri out from under your leg(I hadn't thought of that!)...it might be hard and/or painfull to work so close to your leg, but maybe start next to your leg, maybe start with hands and rake with other foot.

    Is there anyway you could make use of the pistol? How about the other available gear? Waders?

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    I think I remember hearing about this guy. Wasn't there a guy who cut his own arm off also? I have absolutley no idea what I would do. How in the heck do you "train and prepare" for something like that?!?! Prayer for a safe trip in the beginning I guess. I always do that anyway! In this case I would say prevention really is the best medicine!

    later
    A gun is like a parachute. If you need one, and don’t have one, you’ll probably never need one again

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    The Discovery TV Show I Shouldnt Be Alive had an episode where a large rock fell on a poor soles leg and he was stuck. But he was accompanied by another fellow on the trail and he ran back for help. If I remember right he lost his leg but he did not cut it off to free him from the rock.

    Another show on Discovery featured the man hiking in either Arizona or Utah, and his arm was stuck between two rocks. I believe he ended up cutting his arm off with a dull leatherman.

    I would imagine any of these situations are hard to prepare for. I think the best way to approach an unfortunate event like these is to stay calm. Seriously, who can think rationally when their mind is not in the right spot?

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    As noted before, it is also my opinion, prevention is the best medicine. The buddy system works. I know everyone isn't going to use it or not all the time. But choosing to venture on your own, unplanned isn't the wisest thing to do. I know there are those that seek the thrill from going solo and risk is something you will assume in doing so. I am sure we have all heard stories about people that went solo, planned or not and they payed the ultimate price. Two such stories I can remember off hand were guys that went out on wheelers, one dissappeared, the other was pinned under the machine. It happens, even to the best of us. Not to say it wouldn't happen if you had a buddy, but in a situation that is not life/death at least you would have help.

    I work with a guy that decided to go for a ride on his wheeler. He was less experienced as the machine was relatively new to him. As we all have done, he was testing the machine on a hill and flipped it ontop of him. Fortunatly he had a cell phone and had reception, called his wife and got help. He broke his back but made it out alive. I am not sure exactly were he was but had he been away from a traveled area, how long would he have lived. Given the time of year plays a role as well.

    My brother-in-law was out riding with us a few years ago, looking for moose in the winter spike/fork hunt. He tipped his machine into a very small creak, broke his gun and was soaked completely on one side. Mind you it was in Nov. and it was cold. We turned around and headed back to the truck and I was concerned all the way about hypothermia. It took over an hour to get back. On the way he started removing clothing which caused me more concern. We made it back and everything was fine except for the gun which is fixable. Now had he been out alone, what may have happened?

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    I have a friend who did a fly in sheep hunt alone years ago. He had planned the trip with a friend who had to cancel out at the last minute. He ended up in the Wrangels in a horrendous snow storm/blizzard for 2 or 3 days and nights. Got blown down the mountain in his tent, thought he was going to die,etc. Things got worse and he eventually turned on his ELT. The weather broke and a helicpoter found and rescued him. 3 years ago he drew DS203 walk in sheep hunt and chose to not go it alone and I accompanied him. He had done that once and that was enough.
    A gun is like a parachute. If you need one, and don’t have one, you’ll probably never need one again

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    Default You've got it!

    Quote Originally Posted by Snyd View Post
    I think I remember hearing about this guy. Wasn't there a guy who cut his own arm off also? I have absolutley no idea what I would do. How in the heck do you "train and prepare" for something like that?!?! Prayer for a safe trip in the beginning I guess. I always do that anyway! In this case I would say prevention really is the best medicine!

    later
    Exactly the point I am getting at! The only way you can train and prepare for something like this is to first: Do your duty to God and Second: think about what you would do in the event of (fill in the blank) and analyze every aspect.

    The mind does some funny things when it goes into what I call "do or die" mode. Fortunatly, I have never been the victim of any such accident and can't voice for what it is like to be that person, but I have assisted in the rescues of various types and when I walk up on the scene, my mind immediatly goes into "do or die" mode. I assess the area and accident, do my initial checks, then formulate a plan of how to deal with the situation. This is almost always an immediate response due to my situational training.

    These scenarios may seem silly, but many times all you have to do is to have read about it, seen it or heard it to know what to do. For example, I have taken lots of CPR classes over the years. If someone were to ask me what the correct procedure and sequence is when perfoming the act, I would surely have to think about it at the present moment to tell you exactly. BUT I have had to perform CPR and I never once had to "think" about what I needed to do, my mind simply went into "do or die" mode and I just did it.

    ...food for thought and I hope my hunting buddies are eating up!

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    I know what you mean about training. It really does kick in when you need it. I think it's great to talk about scenarios. You never know what may come back to you when you need it.
    A gun is like a parachute. If you need one, and don’t have one, you’ll probably never need one again

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    Quote Originally Posted by Snyd View Post
    I think I remember hearing about this guy. Wasn't there a guy who cut his own arm off also? I have absolutley no idea what I would do. How in the heck do you "train and prepare" for something like that?!?! Prayer for a safe trip in the beginning I guess. I always do that anyway! In this case I would say prevention really is the best medicine!

    later
    Your question was never answered. The hiker's name was Aron Ralston and he cut off his lower arm because he was stuck by a boulder in remote Moab, Ut
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Aron_Ralston

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    Quote Originally Posted by Un-known View Post
    Your question was never answered. The hiker's name was Aron Ralston and he cut off his lower arm because he was stuck by a boulder in remote Moab, Ut
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Aron_Ralston
    Seems like I bought that book and he was here signing autographs over at Tidal Wave books.
    EricL

  14. #14

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    Back to the original post, if one had to cut an appendage off, the best way would to be as follows (this is off the top of my head, but it makes sense to me, if anyone has anything to add, please do!)

    1. Prepare your tornequite around the affected extremity. You may have to place 2 tornequites to sufficiently control the bleeding, one directly above the amputation site and one further above in a muscular area. i.e. if amputating at the ankle, one directly above and possibly one at the meaty part of the calf. If at the knee, a second one may be necessary at the distal thigh. If it is an arm, one may be necessary at the bicep.

    2. Tighten the tornequite REALLY tight! It should probably be quite painful simply applying the tornequite. I would then give it a couple hours to fully deaden the extremity distal to the tornequite. One can test by making incisions into the skin distal to the tornequite, the bleeding shoud stop immediately if the tornequite is tight enough, there should be no blood flow past the tornequite. Try to place the tornequite as close to your intended amputation site as possible to maximize the ammount of saveable tissue.

    3. Perform the amputation. As i said above, be prepared to apply a second tornequite at the nearest meaty site above the first tornequite if there is still arterial bleeding coming from the amputation site below the first tornequite. I have no advise for actually cutting your own flesh, bite on a stick I guess.

    4. Cover the stump with a moist, sterile (ha!) dressing and proceed to getting rescued as fast as you can. Make sure you have your dressing and all the supplies you need laid out in front of you before doing the amputation. You probably don't want to be digging in your pack looking for bandages after just hacking off one of your limbs. If in any way possible, say if you are stuck next to a clean flowing creek, drink lots of water before the amputation so you are well hydrated, and drink lots of water after the amputation for sure. If you had to tie 2 tornequites, you can try to loosen the upper tornequite around an hour or so after the amputation, if you get spurting, arterial bleeding immediately retighten the second one. If not, leave it untied and check periodically for profuse bleeding. (DO NOT RELEASE THE FIRST TORNEQUITE!!!) the one closest to your amputation site, leave it there for the entire time! Don't release it yourself, let a medical professional do it, you should be completely sedated by then!

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    Default Ralston's book is a page turner

    The chapter giving a detailed description of his amputation was fascinating.

    I remember reading the first half of that book and thinking to myself "what an idiot!" because he repeatedly put himself in isolated, remote situations. After the accident he points out that he was in one of the easiest slot canyons around. He actually got caught in one of his less "risky" outings with some very bad circumstances, much like our hypothetical fisherman.

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