Colleton County Fire-Rescue


28/August/2012 – Extrication – “C” Shift

Incident # 12-04733 – A truck driver had to be extricated from under his trailer Tuesday afternoon, after his hand became pinned in a locking mechanism. The device locked the trailer wheels in place on a sliding track. The incident was reported at 17:35 at the northbound rest area, truck parking section near the 47 mile marker on I-95. The driver was attempting to adjust the sliding rear axles, when his hand became entangled in the locking mechanism, crushing his hand and several fingers.  He was in an awkward position and quickly became tired, unable to support himself adding to the intense pain. Firefighter-Paramedics, supported by an advisor from a local wrecker company, evaluated the best way to extricate the man’s hand. The loaded trailer was not an issue, so lifting the trailer would not have resolved the problem.

Crewmembers stabilized the trailer to prevent any movement, while other personnel used a large bag of absorbent booms to prop up the driver. An IV was established to secure a route of administration for pain medications.

His vital signs were continuously monitored, including ECG. Due to the location and design of the mechanism, much of the device was inaccessible. Efforts to manipulate his hand and fingers were unsuccessful, since they were pushed through a perforated track by the locking pin. With the assistance of online Medical Control from Colleton Medical Center, the patient was given additional pain medications before the removal process began. This eased his anxiety. Two Firefighter-Paramedics supported the man under the trailer and positioned themselves to manipulate his hand and fingers. Two additional Firefighter-Paramedics operated the locking arm to release the pressure on his hand. The process was very painful, but with a little effort freed his hand and fingers, without the loss of any digits. His bleeding was controlled with bandages and splints. The patient was transported to Colleton Medical Center for further treatment.

Engine 1, Medic 1, Rescue 1 and Battalion 1 responded. Battalion Chief Dan Barb served as Incident Commander.