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Fire Department Recognized for Miraculous Rescue

Chief Jackson and the crew of Engine Co. #3.

The Downers Grove Fire Department was honored on May 19, 2011 by Advocate Good Samaritan Hospital as a co-recipient of the Joseph Hartmann Award of Excellence. The award is presented to a medic crew or fire department that best exhibits excellence in the delivery of emergency care in a pre-hospital setting.  Numerous emergency calls were reviewed by Good Samaritan EMS Coordinators to arrive at a recipient.

On Wednesday, January 19, 2011 at 10:17 p.m. the Downers Grove Fire Department received a 9-1-1 call regarding a Good Samaritan Hospital maintenance worker who was trapped under heavy machinery in the hospital's mechanical room.  

Upon arrival, firefighters found the worker pinned against a wall by two 800 pound air conditioner coils.  Department officials called for additional personnel and equipment from the neighboring departments of Lisle/Woodridge, Oak Brook, and Westmont.  Members of the Good Samaritan trauma team were on the scene attending to the immediate medical needs of the patient while rescue workers continued extrication efforts.  Firefighters worked for one hour and ten minutes to shore up the coils to free the worker.  Hospital personnel transported him immediately to the emergency room.

Downers Grove Fire Chief Jim Jackson said, "The countless hours of extensive training undertaken annually by our department pays off with each life saved."

Good Samaritan EMS Medical Director Dr. Valerie Phillips stated in her letter of award, "It was the directed action of your treatment team that commands attention. Their ability to access the patient, start an IV and administer fluids, sedate and intubate the patient that made all the rescue efforts worth while. This was truly a special call worth noting."

Chief Jackson and the crew of Engine Co. #3 were in attendance to accept the award: Daniel Mejdrech, Joseph Difatta, George Drobney, Gary Meiser, Mike Cipra, Steve Carlsen, Sig Markowski, Jason Slager, Mike Dravo, Mike Baldwin and Mike Covelli.

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