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As part of the American Red Cross’ East Idaho Real Heroes Awards event, three members of the Pocatello Fire Department have been honored for their lifesaving efforts last year.
At Thursday’s celebration, Captain Todd Deagle, Paramedic Mickey Coward, and Paramedic Dustin Hale were awarded the “Fire Safety Hero Award” by the organization. The honor recognizes a “professional or volunteer firefighter or an ordinary citizen involved in a fire-related incident whose lifesaving action went above and beyond the call of duty.”
“Through their selfless actions, these men have demonstrated what it truly means as members of the Pocatello Fire Department to serve our fellow citizens,” said Chief David Gates. “I’m proud that they are members of our department and happy to see them recognized by the community for their efforts.”
Back in November, the three were called to a building in Pocatello after a man reported that he was feeling numb. The patient had called his mother and reported the numbness, the mother then tried to call her son back but he did not answer, and she called 911. Once on the scene, the mother helped crews gain access to the building and immediately attempted to locate her son in an office at the structure. Alerted to high levels of carbon monoxide by monitors, the group found the mother and instructed her to leave the building. While searching the building, they found the man unresponsive on the floor in an office, having been overcome by carbon monoxide gas. Captain Deagle and Paramedic Hale then removed the man from the building to the safety of a waiting ambulance. While onboard, Paramedic Coward and Hale cared for the patient on the way to the hospital.
“Carbon monoxide can be as dangerous as any fire we face,” said Chief Gates. “In high enough concentrations, it can be deadly within a matter of minutes. By staying behind and finding the victim, they ultimately saved the man from either severe brain damage or death at great risk to their own lives and health.”
An investigation determined that the source of the carbon monoxide was a faulty propane space heater.
For more information on carbon monoxide poisoning and how to prevent it, visit cdc.gov/co/faqs.htm.