Claremore Daily Progress

Community News

July 15, 2013

EMS students get practical with real ‘ambulance’

CLAREMORE —

As Rogers State University student Kenneth Brull watched half of an ambulance dangle from the shovel of a backhoe in June, he couldn’t help but feel nervous. After all, squeezing the 3,000-pound cab through a window in the Health Sciences building was his idea.
 For years, completing vital in-ambulance training had been an exercise in frustration for Brull and other students in the Emergency Medical Services program. 
Students had to crowd around an ambulance in the parking lot, exposed to the elements and surrounded by the bustle of daily campus life. Whenever the class needed it, the ambulance itself had to be moved from its regular home in the physical plant vehicle yard to a spot nearer the Medical Sciences building. 
Last year, Clem Ohman, RSU Emergency Medical Services Coordinator, mentioned the limitations of that setup to Brull. 
A replica in the classroom, either built from scratch or from a kit available from industry suppliers, would be better, Ohman said, but such simulators can cost upward of $40,000. 
“With state support for higher education being what it’s been lately, I didn’t think it would ever happen,” Ohman said, and thought nothing else of it.
 Brull, however, had a plan. 
A millwright in the aviation industry with 23 years of experience and an inveterate tinkerer, he looked at the ambulance and then at the windows on the first floor of the Health Sciences building. “I said to myself, ‘I bet I could get the ambulance box through there if I cut it in half.’” Without telling Ohman what he was up to, Brull measured them both. Sure enough, according to his math, it was technically possible to fit the ambulance through the window one half at a time. He told Ohman about his idea.
 Ohman said that he was skeptical at first, but he eventually came around. “The ambulance box would be an invaluable tool for our students and a tremendous boon to the program,” he said. “Plus, we would be the only program in eastern Oklahoma to have a real ambulance in the classroom.” 

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