Since Lastech works odd hours and sleeps during the day, I sometimes plug earbuds into the laptop and listen to either the police scanner or EMS scanner online. I was listening to the EMS scanner when the call came in about the crash of Asiana flight 214 at SFO. For the next several hours I listened to emergency teams coordinate their response. I also heard the sirens of ambulances making trip after trip to the hospital with victims. You see, the airport is ten minutes South of us via Interstate 101, which itself runs right behind my building.
There were 307 souls on board that plane. 291 Passengers and 17 crew members. Two 16 year old Chinese students (girls) lost their lives. 182 were injured, 49 of them seriously. The only reason more were not lost is due to the airline crew and the other first responders.
That wasn’t all that happened this week.
Our neighbors to the north have suffered a huge loss. Lac-mégantic in Québec still doesn’t know what the death toll is and won’t for some time. Train cars carrying crude oil broke away from the engine and rolled back into town and derailed. Five of the cars exploded. The destruction is massive and the death toll (now at 5) is expected to climb. Many buildings have burned and the number of missing is fluctuating.
That still isn’t all.
One week ago today, 19 firefighters from Prescott Arizona lost their lives fighting a fire. They were members of a Hot Shot team and made up almost 20% of the Prescott Fire Department. It’s a huge loss for everyone.
This has truly been an awful week for first responders AND for victims. Our heart goes out to all of them. It has also been a week for our first responders to shine. We are proud of all them, here and everywhere.