Snowed in ER's, what do you guys do?

  1. 0
    I work in California where I don't see any snow where I'm at.

    When there is heavy snow and you're on shift; do you guys camp out in the ER if the roads are closed?

    And do you keep working since the other shift can't come in?

    I've always been curious about that
  2. 14 Comments so far...

  3. 0
    Quote from Adenosine6
    I work in California where I don't see any snow where I'm at. When there is heavy snow and you're on shift; do you guys camp out in the ER if the roads are closed? And do you keep working since the other shift can't come in? I've always been curious about that
    Hospitals have plans to deal with this, some provide facilities to rest and many require staff to plan to stay longer or come in early.
  4. 5
    I have lived in the northeast for most of my life. Anytime from November through March ... the roads will often be hazardous to some degree. Road closures or actual declarations of weather emergency are relatively rare, as life cannot *stop* on a weekly basis for 5 months out of the year.

    Despite the drama you see on internet news sites and weather.com ... the vast majority of the time, the vast majority of people within the path of a winter storm in regions where winter predictably includes severe weather still do what they gotta do, including getting to/from work. It may mean adjusting schedules, taking extra time, etc. ... but please don't get the idea that we're all camping out at our hospitals. I've seen that happen exactly once during my career.
  5. 5
    Roads closed are to keep the average Joe off the highways and joy riding allowing plows to do their jobs. Your badge is your "pass" as essential personnel. Yes you have to stay f there is not enough personnel to relieve the off going staff under declaring an emergency/disaster so to speak. Most nurses are good about leaving early and able to drive in bad weather. I have only worked at one facility that actually used thier brain ahead of a bad strom and paid staff call pay to sleep at the hospital and fed the nurses...it was one big sleep over we had a blast.
  6. 1
    I'm in the projected 12 inches of snow and white out conditions band starting tomorrow morning. We've already been informed by the hospital that we are expected to show up, and should plan to stay on site until released.

    My home care case is the one I'm worried about. The family lived in the very back of a huge subdivision which did not see a plow the last time it snowed. I'm not sure I can walk that 3/4 mile in the -40 wind chill if I cannot drive into the subdivision. I'm scheduled there during the active snowfall period. Should be interesting.
    psu_213 likes this.
  7. 0
    I have never stayed at work but I have stayed at home. That doesn't last too long though because the administrators find another way to get you to work if your car can't make it for some reason. Last time an administrator drove his high clearance 4x4 with chains on all tires up my steep hill to get me to work.
  8. 2
    There are so many threads on this very subject, and some of them are very entertaining!

    The bottom line is, you plan ahead and do what you need to do to be at work for your shift. I have had to stay overnight (on a guerney in the Pre-Op area), but almost always am able to get to work and back home again with my Front Wheel Drive Prius. I grew up in Wisconsin and learned early to drive in the snow. On November 1, I pack a bag with three days worth of scrubs, underwear, toiletries, prescriptions, spare cell phone charger and my travel CPAP. It goes in the car with me whenever snow is possible. You drive slowly and carefully, and allow plenty of extra time. The worst part is probably shoveling your car out after the snowplow has gone by and plowed it in!

    When staying overnight is required, it's usually a party atmosphere and I've been slightly disappointed at missing some of those parties! There's one that my colleagues are still talking about three years later. I understand that there was karioke involved. I remember one all-night slumber party during which I got to know some of my long-time colleagues a lot better than I ever had, and it's been much nicer working with them since.
    loriangel14 and psu_213 like this.
  9. 0
    I know at my current health system that all personnel are mandated right now to stay until released. We have been expecting this storm so people had time to get arrangements to get to work. I have to work tonight and knowing the roads aren't great I will take it super slow and easy going in.
  10. 0
    Well I live in Ga where it isn't cost effective to have many snow plows/ salt trucks. And b/c of our weather we typically have "ice storms" rather than "snow storms". Ice is very hazardous to drive on and most of the roads do not get salted so people get stuck wherever they are for as long as it takes to melt. It's usually a day but can be up to 3. I remember once it was a week.

    At my hospital nurses aren't required to stay but are encouraged to. They are payed for sleep time. They sleep in the patient rooms on gurneys (I'm ER). Work time is regular pay plus 25%. The cafeteria closes as it is non essential personnel so there is no food unless you brought it or can get an ambulance with chains on its tires to deliver it.

    We always get the jokes about a little snow shutting down the state and how northerners drive in it all the time but before anyone says anything I'll say this, I have a friend from Canada who moved down here and used to make so much fun. She said she could drive in anything and didn't see what the issue was. So we had an ice storm and she drove to work. Well she didn't make it. She slid off the road and rolled several times. She ended up being ok (albeit banged up) but she never makes fun of Georgians anymore for staying home in bad weather lol. She now says "people from the North like me don't get it bc our roads are salted and plowed and we all have four wheel drive but down here it's freaking hazardous". So we have to plan in advance for these situations even if they are minor compared to the blizzards of Minnesota!
  11. 0
    Quote from Rizz
    We always get the jokes about a little snow shutting down the state and how northerners drive in it all the time but before anyone says anything I'll say this, I have a friend from Canada who moved down here and used to make so much fun. She said she could drive in anything and didn't see what the issue was. So we had an ice storm and she drove to work. Well she didn't make it. She slid off the road and rolled several times. She ended up being ok (albeit banged up) but she never makes fun of Georgians anymore for staying home in bad weather lol. She now says "people from the North like me don't get it bc our roads are salted and plowed and we all have four wheel drive but down here it's freaking hazardous". So we have to plan in advance for these situations even if they are minor compared to the blizzards of Minnesota!
    Agreed! In my part of Virginia we had some pretty bad ice four years ago . . . and over-confident drivers went out anyway and got in a 50 car pile up. Since we have a high military population here, I suspect many of those drivers thought they could handle it because they'd driven in snow storms up north. Totally different conditions.


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