101 Things the Fire Department wishes you knew



Friday, August 28

You Make the Call...Triathlon

2 weeks ago one of your co-workers fell down the stairs in the dorm. He's usually a fit guy, training and weight lifting, but somehow turning the corner at the landing took his knee out. You did the assessment, finding little if any sign of injury, but he was transported and placed off duty.

This morning's paper has extensive coverage of yesterday's big triathlon meet and guess who is on the front page, in full color, number attached to his shirt crossing the finish line? No one else at the table seems to notice your injured co-worker running.

Do you say something? If so, who and how? You Make the Call.

9 comments:

Fire Critic said...

Unless you are his supervisor you keep your mouth shut. It is not your business.

I have seen this happen in our department, not a marathon but similar and ended up in the front page of the sports section. He got in trouble but I don't think anyone ratted him out. One of the Chiefs saw it.

Shasta said...

Augh! Don't tell me you think triathletes are cheaters! Being a triathlete myself, I would totally call the guy on his "injury," but to his face, not to his supervisor. Being on the front page means someone else will see it, and he'll get called on it no matter what, without your intervention. Oh, and FYI... it's triathlon, not triathalon :)

kbow18 said...

I would have to know all the circumstances. If it had been 2 weeks since the knee injury he may have healed enough to compete. Especially if it was something he had been previously been training and preparing for.

I know several people (me being one of them) who would run with a slight to moderate injury and just deal with the discomfort. Since the first even is swimming and no impact, the 2nd is a bike ride and again, very little impact, and by the time you get to the running your already exhausted and everything hurts anyway and your running on pure adrenaline.

I would say, let it go. If it was a picture from the bar where he was just getting drunk and partying then it would be more morally responsible for you to report it.

But since it's a triathlon, and most likely for a charity event, you should give him a high five for simply finishing.

The Happy Medic said...

OK Shasta and BeanDip4All, I changed the spelling, but claim artistic license since this entire blog is made up anyways. Geez.

Valar Morghulis said...

I've wandered over here from MC's blog a couple of times, and this is my first comment. I have to kind of agree with kbow18. It would depend on the circumstances. Was the off duty placement that guy's request, or someone else's call? Would you have felt that he would be okay to participate in the triathlon in two weeks had you known that he was planning on participating in your original assessment? How high is the likelihood that he was participating AMA (assuming that he mentioned the event to somebody wherever he was transported to)? Is he still off duty?

He could have held your opinion in higher regard than those he saw after you, and felt he was in good enough condition to participate. He also could be a perpetrator of fraud (assuming he is being paid while off duty). You are really going to be the best at determining that, mainly through judgement of character and past interactions with him. If you think it is all innocent, congratulate him on doing such a good job (triathlons aren't easy). If not, I've always held to the tenet that faulty people are usually more dangerous than faulty equipment.

911 and the Randomness.. said...

I have to agree with Fire Critic, and I'd probably ask him in private too just because I'm nosey like that.

emt.dan said...

Before placing someone on leave due to injury, you should have considered or required an assessment by an MD. If the MD says "X rehab, out of work for 3 weeks" then you have an order. Offer the employee light duty (so they have $$ coming in), or offer them time off. In order to return to work, they need another exam by an MD, to certify they are fit to return.

Greg Friese said...

If the implication is that the guy lied or faked his injury then I would confront him.

While lying and cheating our prevalent in our culture I am confident cheaters don't cheat just once. They cheat on rig checks, they cheat on con ed, they cheat on gear safety checks, they cheat on blood pressure assessment, they cheat on listening to lung sounds, they cheat on department policy and text and talk on the phone while driving, etc.

I think we have an obligation to confront cheating before someone other than the cheater is hurt or killed.

John said...

IF he is on light duty and collecting pay for a duty related injury, "ratting him out" is not wrong. This happened in Boston (inspector out on a back injury and participated in a weightlifting competition) and the FD got reamed in public for it. This guy has deliberately committed fraud. Not what we want the public to see when we are asking for our budget to be spared cuts. Better to get in front of it and have the disciplinary process working when it gets out.