A Miami, Florida, teenager saved the life of an injured police officer.
Thalia Rodriguez was driving when she spotted a man bleeding on the side of the road. The 17-year-old immediately pulled over and rushed to the man’s side. It was then the her first responder training, which she received from a high school health science class, came in handy.
“I knew I couldn’t panic,” she told the Miami Herald. “At that point it was only him, only save him, buy him time. Everything else in such a scenario is all a blur except for what you’re focused on.”
Rodriguez checked the man’s breathing and took his pulse, and stayed by his side as he continued to bleed profusely. His left leg was gone and his right leg was in jeopardy, and the man was unresponsive though alert.
Soon, another driver pulled over to help. That driver happened to be a nurse, but it was Rodriguez’s next move that saved the man’s life. The nurse, Vianca Diaz, got a belt from her car and Rodriguez made it into a tourniquet to wrap around the man’s bleeding leg.
“From there, all we could do was wait until the medical service got there,” she said.
Rodriguez later learned that the man she saved was off-duty Miami Dade police major Ricky Carter.
“It’s rather difficult to be 17 and comfort a grown man during a time like that,” Luis Espinosa, Rodriguez’s emergency medical responder teacher, said. “I was rather impressed with the first aid skills, of course, but I was more impressed with her grace under pressure.”
Espinosa added that Rodriguez made the right call by applying the tourniquet - despite the fact that they often cause people to lose limbs.
- Sean Kelly, AmericaNow.com