Saturday, October 30, 2010

Ambulance personnel cried wolf.

There was a long and slow traffic queue one morning this week. An ambulance of the PCSO drove past with blaring sirens and flashing lights. Naturally, the drivers of the other vehicles made room for the ambulance... it must have been on its way to, or already carrying, a patient in critical condition. 

I caught up with the ambulance at the railroad just past the Calamba City Hall. The patient must be somewhere up the tracks. Good thing the ambulance got there fast, I thought. However, as I was getting past the ambulance, I noticed a passenger, who looked like an MD, buying pako, a type of fern which can be eaten, at a roadside shop; there's no emergency after all! Frankly, I was upset with the EMTs and who appeared to be an MD in that ambulance.

Kuya, mahiya-hiya ka naman. Wala palang emergency e. Ginamit mo pa ang ambulansya para mag-shopping sa tabing kalye. Tsk.

The "no sirens" policy of President Aquino allows emergency vehicles such as ambulances, police cars, and fire trucks to retain their sirens and flashy lights. However, with people abusing these visibility devices (to get out of traffic, in this case), other motorists couldn't help but be cynical whenever they hear the sirens. 

Gusto lang nila makalusot sa traffic e, wala namang pasyente. Wag nga palusutin. 

Many years ago, I've heard a jeepney driver mumble something to this effect on the day that there was a traffic gridlock in Halang, Calamba and a massive fire going on somewhere (I was a passenger in the jeep). Ambulances, fire trucks, and police cars were all stuck in traffic at the intersection and no one was interested to give way. I wonder what time the emergency responders arrived at the destination.

They're just like the boy who cried wolf.