I'm too tired to post about the good job of today, so instead a short post on our last job.

I called up Control on the radio after dropping our patient off at the hospital.

“Control, I need to return to station to clean out the back of our motor – we've just transported one of our 'local legends'. Is there any infection control policy for patients who are infested with insects?”.

“Erm…”, came the reply, “Just scrub everything really well”.

So we returned, used every cleaning product that we have and then used the ambulance jetwash to hose out the interior.

But I still feel itchy typing this.

UPDATE: I woke up this morning and found myself covered in insect bites. So the itchyness yesterday wasn't imagined. I am f*&%king fuming… And wondering what diseases I can catch.

28 thoughts on “Infested”

  1. That reminded me of an Urgent detail I did a few years back, whereby we took a gent in his early sixties from a chair he'd sat in, slept in, shat in, farted in, pissed in, 'splodged himself' in, smoked in & became rather ill in, over the past four weeks.This was due o the fact initailly he couldn't be bothered to get out & as time progressed, his health deteriorated.

    When my crewmate and I came to help the gent stand and transfer him into the carry chair (he was rather weak at this stage) we noticed that something dropped from him as we stood him up. It wasn't until a strong, heavy stench from about his person, which made me turn my head very quickly (before I professionally chundered) that I saw that the thing which had dropped, were in fact maggots – from his bottom. His bottom and surrounding area was necrosed & necrosing.

    I would like to point out that these delights were not part of any ongoing ulcer treatment, so were not purposefully placed!

    Naturally, we informed the receiving hospital of his condition and advised a side room with nurses without smell or stomachs!

    Yes, I was in the back and yes my crewmate did turn up the heating – the anus!

    Tom, I think I'm addicted to your site – you're genius

  2. Anyone here ever worked in a housing department? Imagine a flat left empty while the council tries to work out whether the tenants really have left for good or if they've just gone away on holiday. Imagine there were pets at one time in the flat. Imagine you're the first warm-blooded creature to turn up in weeks…

  3. The trouble is so many heavy-duty cleaning products are horrible for humans who have to enter the place where they were used within the next hour, while leaving a certain number of insect species completely unfazed.A friend of mine, as a student, had an ant problem in his grotty one-room bedsit. As it was one-room, which he had to live and study in (plus he had limited funds), industrial antkiller was out of the question. So he put a heap of sugar by the door where they were coming in. The idea was that if a ready supply of sugar was available to the ants at their point of entry, they wouldn't bother trying to get into his cupboards, clothes or bed any more.It worked too. Except that the concentration of ants immediately around the door grew to the point where non-students wouldn't cross the crawling threshold… might be a bit impractical for an ambulance.

  4. That reminds me of when I asked my granny for some biscuits when I was 8. She told me to help myself, so I got the tin out of the cupboard………..and found that it was crawling with ants!! Cheeky kid that I was, I offered the tin to my 12-year-old brother, and when we'd stopped making a fuss of the ants, he bravely picked the packet out and discovered that the sell-by-date was April 1984! That was 3 months before he was born, and our granny had moved house since then! We never asked her for any biscuits again. Nor did we let her forget our gruesome discovery!

  5. i'm fine with blood, guts, hanging out eye balls, splattered brains… rats, bats, spiders, you name it, whatever.maggots??!

    oh — dear — god.

  6. even seeing a kid with head lice will make you itch so don't sweat it. I'm sure you've been told about infectious conditions – like crabs, scabies etc. lol im sorry babe, im teasing. The likelihood of cross-infection is minimal as I'm sure you followed the protocols.Be well and happy

    Lv Kim xx

  7. Reminds me of some of the derelict buildings I have surveyed, where the only thing still living in them are pigeons. One had a pile of droppings three feet high just inside the front door, and the smell made me gag. Pigeons have fleas (among other things) and the fleas in here were just delighted to have different flesh to munch on and welcomed me with open jaws. I was in there for six hours, crunching on broken and rotten eggs, dead pigeons and pigeon poo. I went home, stripped off in the lobby and threw everything into the washing machine. I could see fleas leaping off me onto the floor.The next morning I too was covered in red bites. My sympathy, mate.

  8. Oh delightful…..Eurax cream is superb for insect bites – managed to take the itch out of 200+ ant bites on a camping holiday – for which I was profoundly grateful!

  9. Hello, I was the r/t op, i had no clue what to say to you….we dont get asked these things that often believe it or not!!

  10. WOW! Maggots have a smell all their own, don't they. I wonder if that poor chair anticipated its fate, as it left the showroom so very many years ago, all plump and wrapped in polythene.Awesome story, love the way you puked just to add to the ambience – I gather from your list the chap hadn't managed that one himself, and I respect your professional desire to complete the full Bodily Emissions set. :o)

  11. I'm told aspartame (Nutrasweet, available generically from supermarkets too) kills ants because they mistake it for sugar and it's (coughs) not very good. For them, for ants, that is – not wishing to be controversial and suggest it's bad for humans, too….

  12. I know exactly how you feel Tom. Memories of going to a well known Doss House not that far from Bloomsbury pop to mind, when we turned a body over to find a whole pool of insects including maggots and cockroaches crawling out of the poor mans cavities, although i did not see it myself my partner swore a Rat ran out of the big hole in the mans stomach.. Back then (1982-) we had what was known as 'Smoke Bombs' which were set off in the closed Ambulance, then it was aired for a bit before we totally washed out. We still ended up with bites from the job itself, but nothing was left alive after! Do they not still use these to defumigate? – Just finished book BTW, great Job, hope you find time to read mine someday.

  13. Hope the itching's packed up by now, it's one of my pet hates having to go to houses I know are infested and filthy.When I see certain addresses on my callsheet for the week I automatically pack spare clothes, then head for the closest supermarket toilets and do a full change putting the clothes into yellow bags as soon as I'm out of there. Goodness knows what Asda's staff think I'm doing in there!

    I still can't believe the conditions some people live in, but after a couple of times of sitting down followed by a warm damp sensation on your bottom you learn to feel the seat first and perch on the edge wherever possible.

    The worst thing I still find is decontaminating electrical equipment that's been in these houses as it all has to be taken apart and done by hand – that's a very pleasant couple of hours!

    I'm itching just thinking about it now!


  14. I now know (and have booked a lobotomy with a shovel to forget, this coming Tuesday 3pm) that “eat your rat” is Nottingham Kid-Speak for oral intercourse upon a lady.These boys have been raised to characterise female genitalia as, “a rat.”

    Possibly the single most despised, and diseased, and death-spreading animal – vermin, rodent, cast your own nickname – in human history.

    Enjoy, and don't call us feminists when “maggot” rears its ugly small blind head.

  15. I agree that term is in poor taste, (no pun intended) but actually rats are smart, energetic, fight to the death when cornered and have big sharp teeth.Those young lads might do well to dwell on that, and treat a young lady's 'rat' with respect!

  16. LOL Good point! Maybe time for a new kind of denture…. oh I'm shutting up now, before I freak myself and the entire male readership out too much…..

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