Two am in the morning and we are standing on the side of the road waiting for the fire service to take the top off the car in front of us. The wind whistles across the flats making us all shiver despite our fleeces and our jackets.
Two cars have been involved in a high speed RTA, the parked car that was hit has been shunted forward leaving ten metres long skid marks. The cars aren't too damaged but the seats inside have shifted around, trapping the occupants.
There are seven ambulances here, four fire trucks, half a dozen police and three ambulance officers with clipboards. There are eight patients, all but one need cutting from the cars and collaring and boarding. The only woman involved is 'walking wounded'.
The reason that it is taking so long for our car to get it's lid removed by the fire service is because of the position of one of the patients inside. He looks rather unwell and the crew looking after him really would like to get to him.
Our ambulance was fourth on scene. When I arrived I spoke to a station-mate to see what he wanted us to do, who he wanted us to look after. Normally he is the station clown, now he's all serious and professional, no fake beards or silly glasses now.
Everyone gets checked over, all the ambulance crews are calm, it's serious but it doesn't look like anyone is about to die; more a case of being careful moving the patients 'just in case'.
The roof comes off the car and with the help of another crew and some firefighters we get our patient out safely and strapped to a board. He is freezing cold. Not wearing warm clothing, the delay in getting him out and the terrible weather has us concerned for his body temperature.
We are in a new ambulance, so the heater works and turning it up to full we are soon sweating ourselves as we assess the patient and prepare for transport.
I get on the radio to pre-alert the hospital – For some reason the radio isn't working properly and our Control can't hear me, so I use my emergency phone instead. Thankfully it works.
I travel a mile over high speedbumps to get to the hospital, there is no other route and every bump makes me aware of my patient in the back being jostled around. It's not the first time that I curse the council.
After all our patients are safe at the hospital we stand outside and laugh and joke. We reconstruct the accident, we talk about the more injured ones and we mock the driving skills of one of the officers.
We occasionally help people.
It's a good job sometimes.