Monday, January 5, 2009

GGNRA Allows Elderly Woman To Die

Never at a loss of resources when it comes to harassing and ticketing people for having their dogs off-leash, the GGNRA made its priorities very clear yesterday when it acted with reckeless disregard for the life of an elderly woman.

Elderly Woman Found Dying On Beach Didn't Make It To Hospital
(Sunday, January 4, 2009 – updated: 6:39 pm PST January 4, 2009 - KTVU News)

"SAUSALITO, CAlif. -- As law enforcement investigates the death of an elderly woman found Sunday on Rodeo beach, firefighters are saying budget cuts may have cost her life.

"Firefighter Paul Sandigo arrived on the scene at 7 a.m. Sunday morning on Sausalito's Rodeo Beach to find an elderly woman just a few hundred yards away from Presidio Fire Station 2.

"'She was kinda mumbling to me, kind of clenching down on her teeth a little bit and kind of opening her eyes a little back and forth and taking like gasping respirations', said Sandigo. 'She was kinda waving a little bit when we showed up. Got there, started trying to work on her, figure out what was going wrong. About two minutes into it, that's when she coded and that's when we started working her up.'

"Sandigo says the woman was suffering hypothermia and was unable to describe how she ended up in the sand. The 71-year-old victim then went into cardiac arrest and firefighters summoned an ambulance.

"But instead of using this one in their own station across the street, they had to summon one from the Presidio five miles away and across the Golden Gate Bridge.

"Budget cuts enforced by the Golden Gate National Recreation Area (GGNRA) last spring cost Station 2 the use of their ambulance.

"'Could it have made the difference between life and death today for this woman? In my opinion, yes', said Brandon Treat, a Presidio firefighter and paramedic.

"Treat says this Presidio ambulance took 15 minutes to reach the beach, travelling through a one-lane tunnel that often delays vehicles for five minutes at a time. Treat says it took another 22 minutes to reach San Francisco's California Pacific Hospital, where the victim was pronounced dead at 9:15 a.m.

"The Presidio Firefighters Local Union is currently in arbitration with the GGNRA over cuts the union says have affected response times and public safety in the Marin Headlands.

"'We would like to see ourselves on-scene in four to six minutes, be on the scene for no more than ten, and on our way to the trauma center so we can get that person the care that they need'", said Treat.

GGNRA Spokesman Michael Feinstein said staffing Station 2's ambulance might not have saved the victim.

"'Medical CPR was delivered within minutes. So I don't know much difference it would've made. I don't believe it's an issue', said Feinstein.

"Firefighters at Station 2 disagree. 'It hinders us', said Sandigo.

"Investigators later towed a car from nearby where the body was found, which may've belonged to the victim. Investigators are treating Rodeo Beach as a crime scene -- though they say there are other likely scenarios.

"'There's a possibility of a fall. There's a 15 or 20 foot cliff area, embankment, down to the beach', said Sam Eddy, a national park service law enforcement ranger.

"The San Francisco County Coroner's Office says it has not positively identified the victim, but investigators say the woman may've been laying on the beach overnight-- when temperatures dipped as low as 29 degrees. An autopsy is expected to be completed by Tuesday."

The criminals who run the GGNRA (headed by Brian O'Neill) have no care for life; human or otherwise. Their goal is the elimination of everyone and everything from a National Park established first and foremost for recreation. This woman's death, like the annual deaths of swimmers and body-surfers at Ocean Beach, could and should have been avoided. But as Feinstein's callous remarks demonstrate, the GGNRA doesn't care. According to him, a 37-minute faster response time would have made no difference to a woman who was alive and responsive when initially attended to and just a couple of minutes away from an ambulance that should have been used. Thank you, Dr. Feinstein. Ironically, the GGNRA continues to muster the resources to constantly harass and ticket those engaged in off-leash recreation, a perfectly legal act. (See We've said it once and will say it again: if we ever see one of them drowning in the water, we'll make sure we stay on leash.



Gizmosav said...

Satchie, I can't believe this is going on!!! How would one of them feel if is was their family???

Flanaghan the Newfie said...

Yes, the GGNRA is a gang of criminals. We all know it and they know it, but no one in local government has the courage or integrity to get rid of them. How sad for the woman and any family she has.

Flanaghan the Newfie

Clyde the Newf said...

Ditto Flan -- from Pelosi to O'Neill to a sheer and utter idiot like Feinstein, the GGNRA is nothing but legalized crime. For them to hinder the firefighters is tantamount to voluntary manslaughter. May they rot in jail along with Michael Vick.


Bob said...

"Law enforcement"? Is this the fedreal government investigating the federal government, again?
Remember the woman at Crissy Field who was killed by a hit-and-run driver a few years ago? After "law enforcement" could not solve the crime, the NPS/GGNRA put an advertisement in The Chronicle telling the killer to come forward and perhaps get some mercy, because they knew who the person was and would find him/her. Nothing ever happened, which is exactly what will take place in this latest tragedy. More blood on your hands, O'Neill.

Brent Plater said...

The 2008 GGNRA Endangered Species Big Year is a race against time to see—and save—the Park's endangered species.
The GGNRA contains more endangered species than any other National Park in continental North America. This is certainly cause for celebration, but also for concern. Take part in the Big Year and get to know these species while helping them recover.
Coming Up
Sat., Jan. 10, 2009, 1pm: The 2008 GGNRA Endangered Species Big Year is officially over, but we still have reason to celebrate the wonders of this great National Park! Join us at the Crissy Field Center for our closing ceremony!

As for the woman at Rodeo Beach, she was old, probably disturbing wildlife, and had no business being there. It's time to celebrate, not mourn.

Brent Plater
GGNRA Big Year

Anonymous said...

Given her apparent condition, she probably could have been saved with the proper facilities.
Emergency medical help should be summoned whenever a person appears hypothermic. The danger signs include intense shivering; stiffness and numbness in the arms and legs; stumbling and clumsiness; sleepiness, confusion, disorientation, amnesia, and irrational behavior; and difficulty speaking. Until emergency help arrives, a victim of outdoor hypothermia should be brought to shelter and warmed by removing wet clothing and footwear, drying the skin, and wrapping him or her in warm blankets or a sleeping bag. Gentle handling is necessary when moving the victim to avoid disturbing the heart. Rubbing the skin or giving the victim alcohol can be harmful, though warm drinks such as clear soup and tea are recommended for those who can swallow. Anyone who aids a victim of hypothermia should also look for signs of frostbite and be aware that attempting to rewarm a frostbitten area of the body before emergency help arrives can be extremely dangerous. For this reason, frostbitten areas must be kept away from heat sources such as campfires and car heaters.

Rewarming is the essence of hospital treatment for hypothermia. How rewarming proceeds depends on the body temperature. Different approaches are used for patients who are mildly hypothermic (the patient's body temperature is 90-95°F [32.2-35°C]), moderately hypothermic (86-90°F [30-32.2°C]), or severely hypothermic (less than 86°F [30°C]). Other considerations, such as the patient's age or the condition of the heart, can also influence treatment choices.

Mild hypothermia is reversed with passive rewarming. This technique relies on the patient's own metabolism to rewarm the body. Once wet clothing is removed and the skin is dried, the patient is covered with blankets and placed in a warm room. The goal is to raise the patient's temperature by 0.5-2°C an hour.

Moderate hypothermia is often treated first with active external rewarming and then with passive rewarming. Active external rewarming involves applying heat to the skin, for instance by placing the patient in a warm bath or wrapping the patient in electric heating blankets.

Severe hypothermia requires active internal rewarming, which is recommended for some cases of moderate hypothermia as well. There are several types of active internal rewarming. Cardiopulmonary bypass, in which the patient's blood is circulated through a rewarming device and then returned to the body, is considered the best, and can raise body temperature by 1-2°C every 3-5 minutes. However, many hospitals are not equipped to offer this treatment. The alternative is to introduce warm oxygen or fluids into the body.

Hypothermia treatment can also include, among other things, insulin, antibiotics, and fluid replacement therapy. When the heart has stopped, both cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) and rewarming are necessary. Once a patient's condition has stabilized, he or she may need treatment for an underlying problem such as alcoholism or thyroid disease.

GB said...

Indeed! From

Seek immediate medical attention for anyone who appears to have hypothermia. Until medical help is available, follow these hypothermia treatment guidelines for caring for someone who is affected.

What to do

Move the person out of the cold. Preventing additional heat loss is crucial. If you're unable to move the person out of the cold, shield the person from the cold and wind as best you can.
Remove wet clothing. If the person is wearing wet clothing, remove it and replace it with a dry covering. Cover the person's head. Try not to move the person too much. Cut away clothing if you need to.
Insulate the person's body from the cold ground. Lay the person faceup on a blanket or other warm surface.
Monitor breathing. A person with severe hypothermia may appear unconscious, with no apparent signs of a pulse or breathing. If the person's breathing has stopped or appears dangerously low or shallow, begin cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) immediately if you're trained.
Share body heat. To warm the person's body, remove your clothing and lie next to the person, making skin-to-skin contact. Then cover both of your bodies with a blanket.
Provide warm beverages. If the affected person is alert and is able to swallow, have the person drink a warm, nonalcoholic beverage to help warm the body.
What not to do

Don't apply direct heat. Don't use hot water, a heating pad or a heating lamp to warm the person. Instead, apply warm compresses to the neck, chest wall and groin. Don't attempt to warm the arms and legs. Heat applied to the arms and legs forces cold blood back toward the heart, lungs and brain, causing the core body temperature to drop. This can be fatal.
Don't massage or rub the person. Handle people with hypothermia gently because they're at risk of cardiac arrest.
Don't provide alcoholic beverages. Alcohol lowers the body's ability to retain heat.
What a doctor may do
A doctor will be able to take steps to warm the body from the inside out, if necessary. One method may involve giving the person warm fluids intravenously.

In severe cases of hypothermia, a process called hemodialysis may restore normal body temperatures quickly. Hemodialysis is a medical procedure that removes extra fluid, chemicals and wastes from the blood by filtering the blood through an artificial kidney. It's often used in people with kidney failure. In a hypothermia situation, the blood is removed purely to warm it rapidly outside the body and then have it returned to the body.

Anonymous said...

Brent Plater, the mother of all dog haters. Isn't he defending Michael Vick?

Anonymous said...

Plater should be put to sleep. It's the only humane thing to do.

JB said...

Good job, Satch.
Hopefully, the GGNRA will end up having to pay big bucks for killing this woman.


Anonymous said...

GGNRA = killer among us.

Don K said...

Now the GGNRA mouthpieces are saying that such a death, which they could have avoided, was from "natural causes". So the refusal to dispatch an ambulance right across the street is a "natural cause".

CDS said...

I wonder if we ought to wear t-shirts describing what kind of medical insurance we have, if that would make a difference when someone comes upon us when we collapse on the beach on the verge of death. Does our type of medical insurance make our life more valuable? Sometimes I think I ought to have Pet Insurance, my Mom says we have AAA, maybe I could get a tow truck to help me sometime. Anyway, it's valuable to know CPR. Otherwise, it's best to walk the beach with a friend! A dog is a good friend.


Ben Thare said...

With the GGNRA it's always habitat creations, e.g., frog ponds, before people. Period. If the woman were a native plant or an injured snowy plover, then the GGNRA would have dispatched at least 50 rangers and a couple of medevac choppers pronto! Way to go GGNRA! Now would you please leave the Bay Area and give us our open space back?