A Bank Holiday Weekend – as told by a LIVES responder

A Bank Holiday Weekend – as told by a LIVES responder

While for most, a bank holiday weekend is the chance for an extra day of rest and relaxation or to spend time with loved ones, for many LIVES responders it’s an opportunity to volunteer more of their time.

One LIVES responder tells us what a bank holiday weekend is like for them…


7pm – LOG-ON

“After finishing work on the Friday and arriving home at 5.30pm, I arranged to go on-call with another LIVES responder in the evening. At 7pm we both logged on, but unusually for us, it was a quiet evening and we didn’t get a called to any emergencies. While on-call, we decided to jointly clean and inspect the responder kit. The inspection and cleaning process is an important part of the LIVES role as we are making sure we are prepared with the correct, clean equipment for any eventuality. During times when it is quiet it is also a good idea to do some revision, so we chose to review a number of different medical emergency scenarios that we may encounter in our roles and how we would manage the different patients. At 10.30pm on the Friday, after a full-day at work in my day-job, we decided to book off shift as this was a very rare occurrence that we had no calls.”

10.30pm – LOG-OFF


7pm – LOG-ON

“The next evening, on a Saturday, another LIVES responder and I had arranged to do part of a night shift together. We logged on-call at 7pm.”

9.46pm – FIRST CALL

“At 9.46pm we got our first call-out. The first emergency of the evening we attended involved a patient suffering a suspected stroke. We arrived at the patient’s property 6 minutes after receiving the call and carried out a full set of observations on the patient. The ambulance service arrived midway through our observations and we were able to handover our findings so far and ask them if they required any further assistance. The ambulance crew asked us for further assistance in treating the patient. We were on the scene for over 30 minutes before we cleared with control.”

10.22pm – LEAVE SCENE

10.59pm – SECOND CALL

“The second call of the evening came just before 11pm. The patient was a new mother having difficulty breathing. Again, when we arrived we carried out a full set of observations on this patient. Once the ambulance crew arrived we gave them a handover of our findings so far and asked them if they required any further assistance. No further assistance was required so we cleared the scene.”



“Sunday was a rest day for me; I was not on duty this day as I had family commitments to attend to and I was anticipating a busy bank holiday Monday for LIVES, so I wanted to ensure I was prepared and re-energised for the next day.”


11am – LOG-ON

“On the bank holiday Monday I decided to go on duty and do a shift solo responding from late morning. Firstly, I cleaned, prepared and checked the responder kit to make sure everything was in good working order and had not exceeded any expiry dates. I decided to refuel my car in preparation for a busy day and did this early on in my shift as there was a lot of traffic about on the bank holiday especially in the coastal areas of Lincolnshire.”

12.53pm – FIRST CALL

“My first call was just before 1pm. I was called a patient in her 70s who was having severe chest pains. I did a set of observations on the patient and ran through the appropriate protocol to ensure I had the full picture of the patient’s medical background and history. I observed that the patient looked pale and she complained of a pain in the centre of her chest which ran round to her back. The ambulance service arrived around half an hour after I arrived and I then proceeded to give them a full patient handover. Whilst I was handing over, the ambulance technician performed an ECG and this showed that the patient was having a heart attack. I asked if I could assist in any further way they were happy for me to stand down whilst they made arrangements to transport the patient to hospital.”

4.12pm – SECOND CALL

“The next call came in a few hours later, this was for a patient who was fitting and having convulsions at a local pub. Despite it being busy with traffic I got to the patient at 7 minutes later, just as the ambulance service were also arriving at the scene. The ambulance paramedic recognised me and asked me to assist with carrying equipment to the scene where the patient was found to be fitting. My role as a LIVES responder in this instance is to assist the paramedic as directed by him. Knowledge of the layout of the back of an ambulance and where things are kept is very important in my role as a LIVES responder, this is so I know where all the different equipment is kept and can get equipment quickly in an emergency situation. The patient had observations taken at the scene and was put on a stretcher and transported to hospital. I cleared with control ready for my next job; however I did not receive another incident call on this shift. At 7pm, I decided to book off shift as I was at work early the next day.”

7pm – LOG-OFF

LIVES responders and medics give up their time to volunteer in their local communities and be there for people in a 999 medical emergency, but they are only able to do this through public donations. Keep our responders on the road, donate to LIVES today.


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