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Author Topic: Police Procedures relative to accident victims  (Read 2096 times)

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Coco

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Police Procedures relative to accident victims
« on: August 25, 2008, 04:33:04 PM »

I posted this on another board, but I don't think the 'medical procedures' gets much traffic, so, I'm asking here.  I probably should have posted this here to begin with.   :'(  This is question for my novel.

I have a woman who has been in an accident, she's bruised, face is swollen, in an out of consciousness.  It's been determined by the police that someone attempted to kill her by ramming into the back of her car, and she ultimately winds up on the edge of a cliff.  Fifty feet from the woman, is a dead man who's been shot in the back of the head.

My question is:  Would the police have a guard at the door for the female victim while she's in the hospital?

Thanks for your help. :-)

Coco
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Elena

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Re: Police Procedures relative to accident victims
« Reply #1 on: August 26, 2008, 10:33:02 AM »

Coco this one has so many possibilities that it's an author's heaven. The answer?  It depends.  If you are in a big city at a very large urban hospital your victim could be in a no visitor ICU - no guard, but those working the floor know to be vigilant, or the hospital security could take over, or they probably have an area where the rooms have extremely high security.  In part it depends on what sort of care she needs.

Going to a smaller place, the entire staff might be warned to watch out for strangers, and her door would be kept locked.  The local police might not have the staff to have someone guard. 

Or there are all sorts of other possibilities, such as the family hiring private security, or the hospital using someone from the maintenance staff to do the guarding (that's real, I saw it once), or family members staying with her.

Have fun!
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"Head for the round house Maude, they can't corner us there!"

Coco

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Re: Police Procedures relative to accident victims
« Reply #2 on: August 26, 2008, 07:23:33 PM »


Elena,
Thanks for your response.  Now, my next question is whether or not she'd be able to slip out of the hospital unnoticed?  Since her injuries are not life-threatening , at least on the surface, and I guess they wouldn't know for certain she's not bleeding internally until they've completed testing, but would they take her to the ER first, instead of assigning her to a room?  I have a detective who's already at the hospital while she's still unconscious, and he walks away to take a call.  When he returns, she's gone.

Thanks for your help.  I'm sure I'm going to have lots more questions.  I don't want my fans coming back after this novel is published pointing out I messed up.  LOL

Coco
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Dave Freas

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Re: Police Procedures relative to accident victims
« Reply #3 on: August 26, 2008, 09:43:19 PM »

Hi, Coco

Once she is delivered to the ER, she would stay there until (1) the staff had determined the nature and extent of her injuries and started treatment and (2) the hospital has a room available for her.  She's probably going to be in the ER at least 2 or 3 hours (if not longer!) before that all gets done.  It will depend on (a) how busy the ER is, (b) the severity of the other cases being treated (more life-threatening conditions go first), and (c) how soon they can have a room available on the medical floor where she needs to be.

Based on the nature of the injuries you describe, she would probably be placed on a general medical wing.  Since she is slipping in and out of consciousness, there would be some sort of monitoring of her status, even if it amounted to nothing more than a nurse/nurse's aide/orderly checking on her every 10 or 15 minutes.

One thing you need to consider is that if she's been in a car crash, she's probably bleeding from some cuts (facial and head cuts bleed like crazy).  Some of that blood is going to end up on her clothes.  When she gets to the ER, they may cut her clothes off and throw them out (after emptying the pockets, of course) if they're especially bloody.  If she skips out dressed only in a hospital gown, she's going to stick out like a sore thumb.  So she's going to have to scare up some street clothes somewhere, somehow.

Hope this helps.

Dave
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