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Casualty Drill

Posted on 15 Jul 2022 @ 11:18pm by Assistant Game Manager Beth & Lieutenant Commander Elizabeth Watts & Senior Chief Petty Officer Franklin Dover & Assistant Game Manager Tristan

Episode: E1: A Historic Voyage
Location: Crew's Mess & Passageway
Timeline: Date 2025-04-22 at 1000

The Executive Officer entered the crew's mess and looked around looking for a victim, literally. She held in her hand a typed up paper that had printed on it vital signs, medical condition, and some other basic information. She saw a non-rate sitting at a table clearly studying and figured that was a good victim so she approached them.

"Can you do me a favor?" Liz asked, knowing that it'd likely startle the young non-rate who would never expect to speak to the XO directly other than a passing greeting as required by military courtesy.

Jeremy Pritchard had, indeed, been studying. He'd requested the submarine service thinking it would be adventure, but really... it seemed like a lot of it involved studying. The XO's voice caught him off guard and he looked up wide-eyed for a moment, not immediately connecting the speaker with the question asked. Then his eyes widened and he half scrambled out of his seat to stand up, saluting. "Ma'am."

Liz was kind and returned the salute despite it not being policy, he was anxious, she was about to make his day more hectic, she'd mention it to his chief when she had time.

"Good morning, Pritchard," Liz said, now close enough to read the man's nametag. "I need a favor, would you help me with a training exercise?"

Jeremy's eyes vaguely resembled saucers at the request and he nodded dumbly before adding, "Yes ma'am. Happy to help. What do you need me to do?"

"Good," Liz said, she took the paper she had been holding and pinned it to the front of his coveralls. "You've been injured, you have a broken left leg, you can't walk, you're hurt very bad. Can you pretend to cry?" she asked, jokingly.

For a moment Jeremy seemed to be considering the question seriously. But in the end, a moment later than expressly necessary, he realized that the XO was kidding. "Do... do I need to be anywhere particular?" he asked. "Or did I break my leg here in the mess?"

"Actually, the ward room is on the same level so why don't we go up or down a deck so they can practice carrying up or down," Liz said after a moment. "Good idea sailor," she said, encouragingly. "You pick."

The non-rate frowned, perhaps overthinking, but wanting to seem like he'd actually given it consideration. In the end, though, he might as well have flipped a coin. "Down, I think," he said pausing for only a beat before adding, "ma'am."

"CONN, XO, medical emergency in the torpedo room after ladderway. Medical team required," Liz reported, via her portable radio.

"XO, CONN, roger ma'am," the response came. Then over the 1MC, the same voice repeated: "Personnel casualty, personnel casualty. Chief Corpsman and stretcher-bearers lay to the torpedo room ladderway."

Machinist Mate Third Class Hilliard looked up from his work when he heard the announcement on the 1MC. He nodded towards his team lead before returning his tools and quickly making his way towards the medical supply locker. He was one of the primary stretcher bears for medical emergencies, and he was met by his counterpart at the locker.

Seaman Gates, a non-rate assigned to the weapons department, had made his way from his station in the Torpedo Room. He had hurried quickly to the medical stores in a hurry. Seat dripped down his forehead and the rest of his face while he simply gave Hilliard a nod and started to grab additional gear that the Corpsman would require.

At the base of the ladder outside of the torpedo room the XO had the fake casualty lying on the ground in a somewhat contorted position. The story was the he had fallen down the ladder when the sub had changed depth at a steep angle suddenly and he had an obviously broken right ankle. Liz was standing out of the way wearing the red hat that indicated that she was an observer of the drill and they should pretend that she isn't there.

The Senior Chief Corpsman, Frank Dover, arrived at the scene with his bag slung over his shoulder. It wasn't until he arrived and spied the XO there in her observer hat and a fake patient that he even knew this was a drill.

"What's your first name Kinzer?" the Senior Chief asked, kneeling down beside him. "What happened?" he asked, as he began to open his bag and then pretended to examine his leg.

Jeremy's leg was tucked at an odd angle, the position making his leg fall asleep. It was distracting as he aimed to focus on the Chief. "Jeremy..." he mumbled before adjusting, "I mean... Seaman Apprentice Jeremy Kinzer, sir. I fell down the ladder... sir..."

Hilliard and Gates arrived shortly after the corpsman and began setting up the stretcher before Hilliard knelt down to assist the corpsman in treating the man. He noticed the XO wearing her red cap which told him this was a simulated casualty. While he internally breathed a sigh of relief, his focus remained on the patient and his demeanor calm and professional. "What do you need from us doc," he offered.

Gates found himself space nearby waiting to jump in when the corpsman needed a hand.

"Just hang tight for now," the Corpsman responded. He stopped with his motions on his leg and then turned his attention to Jeremy. "Jeremy I'm a senior chief and you can call me senior or doc if you'd like," he said, with a smile. It was important to correct a young sailor but there were times to be compassionate about it.

"I've conducted an assessment of the leg and checked for bleeding, none seen, there is an obvious deformity," HMCS announced, checking the paper pinned to the sailor's coveralls. "Does your neck or back hurt?" he asked, as he began to palpate the areas he indicated.

The whole pins and needles thing was really bugging him now, but he held still. "My neck, s... umm... doc..." he said, catching himself before he made the same mistake. He waited until there was pressure on a point and then, warming to the role, faked cringing with pain.

"Prepare a splint for the leg, sam should work, setup the stretcher we'll have to carry him up to the wardroom." HMCS ordered his stretcher bearers.

"Aye aye, doc," Hilliard said before looking to Gates, "I'll assemble the stretcher if you help doc with the splint." When Gates agreed, Hilliard stood and grabbed the stretcher that was folded up beside them. As they worked on the patient, Hilliard unfolded the stretcher and made sure the carry poles were locked in place. He then laid it out on the adjacent bulkhead before taking position behind the patient's head.

Noticing the cringe when he pressed despite having not seen anything about a neck injury on the paper he decided he'd react. He went into his bag and pulled out a cervical collar.

"This is going to be uncomfortable but it will protect your neck," the HMCS said, as he applied it with a practiced ease around the sailor's neck. He was glad the days of backboards had left the Navy and really medicine as a whole they made things just worse. If needed they would pad him for comfort when they moved him onto the stretcher.

Gates tied off the bandage around the splint and looked back at the HMCS with a nod. "Splint secured doc," he said. He then moved and positioned himself near the folded out stretcher. Their procedures were that Gates would carry the feet since he was slightly taller and could bring the stretcher up ladders better.

Liz watched as the medical personnel went about their duties it seemed to be a cohesive team which was nice. The most important thing at this point for her was to see the stretcher bearers be able to successfully carry this man up to the wardroom while the submarine was actually moving. She obviously was in no real position to evaluate the medical care provided by the Corpsman.

The Senior Chief Corpsman assisted the two stretcher bearers securing the non-rate who had been volunteered as patient to the stretcher. He verbalized another assessment checking for a pulse in the foot and sensory which were all fine.

"Meet me in the wardroom, I'm going to go set up," the HMCS said, moving to repack his bag.

"Senior Chief you can secure from drill, we will end once the patient is carried into the wardroom," the Executive Officer announced.

"Aye ma'am," the Senior responded. "I'll wait here with you in case they drop him on his head if that's okay with you, ma'am."

"Perfect," Liz laughed.

From his new location on the stretcher Jeremy winced, his face paling slightly. It was a not insignificant climb from one deck to another and while they were all plenty strong, he couldn't help a tiny bit of doubt as he found himself wondering why he'd suggested this spot again.

Hilliard and Gates lifted the stretcher after making sure the patient was secured. It was not a long journey to the wardroom, but It meant going up a level. Coming to the first ladder, they paused only for a moment to get positioned right. Gates, who was leading feet first, began moving up the ladder and lifted the stretcher up as Hilliard moved forward and kept it level. Once clear of the ladder, Hilliard looked down at Jeremy and gave him a wink. "Relax, this isn't our first rodeo," he said before sharing a knowing look with Gates.

Jeremy stared at Hilliard, eyes wide, for a moment. Having just been taken up the ladder feet first a part of him wondered if he might need the Corpsman after all as the blood rushed to his head making him just the tiniest bit lightheaded before the stretcher leveled out on the next deck. "Yes, umm..." he trailed off, eyes roaming trying to get a look at Hilliard's rank to ensure he addressed him correctly. "Machinist Mate Third Class," he stammered out when he finally caught the man's rank as Hilliard and Gates began moving him toward the wardroom. "Thank you. I look forward to being more horizontal for the rest of the ride."

Once they entered the wardroom Liz and the HMCS followed in after the men who were now putting the stretcher on the wardroom table. Liz watched the three men turn their heads and look in her direction she met eyes with the HMCS who gave an approving nod.

"Good work, secure from drill," Liz ordered.


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