Sunday, September 18, 2011

Heimliched at McDonalds



I was at McDonalds killing time before a business meeting on the road. Just behind me woman started choking, and the women at the table were wondering what to do, then they said loudly, "She's Choking!" A guy the next table got up, and grabbed the woman and did the Heimlich maneuver on her. I was wondering what to do, but I didn't do anything.

The woman was chubby, and that made it hard to get good leverage, but the guy kept doing it. The women turned blue in the lips, and kept trying to gasp for air. They just kept trying to Heimlich her, every minute or so.

The McDonald's workers noticed, and soon the store manager was there. He was pretty tall, and he tried to Heimlich her too. He was fast; he just kept Heimliching over and over. He pulled her up in the air when he pulled, and hardly let her down to the ground in-between Heimlichs he was pulling so hard and so fast.

The poor lady looked really desperate, and tired and scared and blue. She fainted or maybe she fell. The manager picked her up and kept trying. She had foam at her month since she couldn't swallow either.

The woman's friend (her 16 year old niece as it turns out) got on the phone to 911, and was trying to work the 911 operators question tree -- no she is not unconscious; no she can't talk; she was eating chicken nuggets and french fries...

The second time she fell; it was all the way to the ground, and she laid back. This time her head was right next to me since she fell across the aisle. She lost strength in her legs or she fainted, and the people couldn't hold her up. She looked just terrible.

In 2-3 minutes, a fire truck is coming down the street, and a guy is hanging out of the doorway waving for the firefighters to come in. The fire captain wasn't tall, but he was beefy, and he stopped the restaurant manager. Then he said something to the woman's friends, and started Heimliching himself. He was slower,  smoother and more rhythmic than the others.

I don't know if the woman was breathing, but she much have been getting some air. Soon they stretched her on the ground, and they were giving her an abdominal message -- something like a Heimlich maneuver but lying down. It looked like a heart message, but actually it was in the abdomen not the chest.

The color in the woman's face got better, and I exited the restaurant.

After watching all this, I felt terrible. This poor lady had been thought this terrible ordeal -- frightened and choking. I felt worn out from just being there.