Road trip

Code 3 for a vehicle accident.

We get there first. Nice residential neighborhood. There’s a car that’s got one wheel on the sidewalk in front of one house but otherwise it made no apparent contact with any other object. No one is in the car.

“Who’s driving this thing?”

The homeowner motions towards a little old lady standing near her.

“Ma’am, this is your car?”


She’s fairly lucid, initially, and seems to be aware that her car is up on the sidewalk. A few cops show up, one by one.

“Do you know where you are?”

“I’m not really sure.”

“Where do you live?”

“Um… I don’t know.”

“Where were you coming from?”

“I don’t know.”

“Can we call your family? What’s the phone number?”

“I’m sorry, but I can’t remember.”

We dig through her stuff and find a phone with some numbers.


“Hi, my name is Medic, and I’m a City A paramedic. Nobody’s hurt or sick, but I’m with a lady here you might know. Do you know an Old Lady?”

Never a good sign when you hear those words.

“Why, yes, that’s my mother. What’s going on?”

“Well, we’re not sure, but she seems to have run her car up onto the sidewalk. She didn’t hit anything, but she doesn’t even seem to know where she is.”

“Where did you say you were calling from?”

“City A.”

“Oh my God, how did she get all the way there?”

“Why? Where do you guys live?”

“City B.”

Only about 350 miles between the two.


“I know! We don’t even know anyone in that area!”

“When did you guys last see her?”

“About 10 hours ago. She’s completely independent so it’s not a big deal.”

I hope she doesn’t think I’m judging her because I’m not. Plenty of old people do whatever they want by themselves.

“I wonder how she ended up here. She must have had to stop for gas too. But she has absolutely no idea how she got here, and she doesn’t even remember what she’s been doing this whole time. We’re going to take her to the hospital, OK? We’ll be at Kxxx Hospital – do you need directions?”

“No, thanks, we’ll look it up. Thanks again.”

3 thoughts on “Road trip”

  1. I’m a paramedic in Southwest Michigan. I ran nearly that same call just a few weeks ago. The poor lady had driven about 300 miles before being pulled over by police who recognized her plates and car from a missing persons report filed by her family form her home town about 5 hours prior.

    Great Blog keep up the good work.

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