Snow emergency excuse? - page 4

so, here in nyc, we're expecting a big one this weekend. my friend is working tomorrow night, and is anticipating a problem getting in to work already (they're saying it's going to be at it's worst... Read More

  1. by   kat911
    We get snow here about once a year for about 24 hours, never stays cold for long here. Everything grinds to a halt. Couple of years ago we had an ice storm. I was working for EMS. It took me an hour and a half to get to work. Got sent on a transport in the evening that took us over7 hours to go 120 miles. One ambulance slid off the highway and rolled into a ditch while driving 15mph. We were tasked with taking a replacement to rural station and take shook medic back to his car. ( he had mud in his ear where partner stepped on his head trying to get out of window :chuckle ) I got the job of driving replacement, less than mile from where first ambulance rolled I slid off road into very shallow ditch and got stuck. Finally able to get out of ditch, would only move backwards, hey, whatever it takes. Got fresh mud all over the medic we were transporting when tires spun . We had to laugh it was so ridiculous and we were so tired.
  2. by   ProfRN4
    Quote from triagern_34
    so if you live close...sorry...just like us that live chose that! i have had to do my share too...always coming in to cover because i lived the closest for many years!
    you say this, yet you say you are a planner (which is not the case with the people i work with. and you do appreciate being the local one, being expected to come in. it purely is luck of the draw (and sadly, my friend has had bad luck in the three years she is here ). and now being the one that is not so close, you plan accordingly (as a smart nurse should).

    and i do believe there needs to be some better administrative planning. there are no 'accomodations' for us (hotel and the like). my friend told me the last time she got stuck there, they ran out of food at the hospital (how do you run out of food!!! i would have been on the horn with someone at that point). and in the last few years, all the 'big ones' have been on weekends or holidays, where our fearless leader is nowhere to be found (you think she'd come in to support the staff?).

    someone made another good point too. it's all about the work ethic as well. my friend (from the op) is very dedicated to her job (the kind who calls on her days off to see how the pts are doing). she will think twice about calling in if she is sick (they'll be short staffed if she doesn't come in!!) another one (who is scheduled to work tonight) is the complete opposite, so it comes as no surprise that this is her attitude. she will do everything possible to get out of her weekend and holiday obligation. so in this case, it's typical poor work ethic.
  3. by   Purple Princess
    I come in for my 3-11 shift and probably two of the nurses called off and ALL of our aides called off. I was the only aide that came. A couple people stayed over from 7-3 but they also have to work again tomorrow. One lady lives at least 30 some miles away so she came in at 5:30 this morning worked until 11 tonight!! and she has a bag packed so that she can stay at the nursing home and work again tomorrow. she'll be sleeping in one of the residents beds that is currently in the hospital. She can't really go home because the roads are bad and were suppose to get more:uhoh21: What was bad is that I'm still on light duty because of a back injury. And they only have two aides tonight for 11-7 and one that is also on light duty cause she broke her arm at work.
  4. by   OneChattyNurse
    i started a new position in october. i am now a staffing coordinator. i cannot believe the amount of people who call in and the excuses they give.

    "my doors on my house are frozen and i can't get out!"
    "i have 28 turns and it is too slick"
    "my garage door is frozen shut and i can't get my car out"
    "i just don't think i will try it today"

    and the list goes on and on!

    i also have the belief that you choose where you work. i do live in a rather rural area but there are options out there!

    anyway...i just wanted to let you know that i share your frustration (and vent a little myself)!!!

    have a great day, evening, night, whatever the case may be!!!
  5. by   allamericangirl
    Denver area gets snow but for the most part 6" seems to be the normal amount of accumulation. Generally our roads and streets are clear.

    March 2002 they predicted that we would get 2 to 4 inches of snow. When we woke up the next morning we found that it had snowed buckets and barrels all night. We awoke to 4 FEET of snow and 8 and 12 foot drifts. There were drifts completely covering windows and doors. It was a nightmare. People couldn't get out of their homes. Roofs were collapsing. Neighbors who could get out dug other neighbors out. We all got out and shoveled snow. Some folks had to go out windows because their doors were covered. One of the drifts at our home was from the ground to the bottom of a second story window. Never saw anything like it before, and hope I never do again!

    The snow plows were on overload and couldn't get to secondary streets for days, let alone side streets. We were declaired a state of emergency.

    Our whole neighborhood shoveled our street so that we could get out to the main road. There were probably 60 families on our cul de sac, and everyone shoveled. It took us 3 days to clear one lane to the main road. The National Guard came in and took essential personel to work, but they had to get to the main roads to be picked up.

    Hospital workers were dropping in their tracks from fatigue, because there was no way to relieve them.

    I hope that you guys don't get slammed like that. We have had some really strange weather patterns with some freaky storms the past few years. It's hard to prepare for something like 12 foot drifts!
  6. by   ClimbingNurse
    I'm still in nursing school. Both of my clinical instructors this term went over snow policy last week. They both said "Look out your window. If you don't see the four horsemen of the apocalypse, come in." This is in DC, which usually doesn't get all that much snow.

    I'll be starting work in Denver in September. The above post makes me nervous... I do not believe in commuting far though, so I will more than likely live less than 5 miles from the hospital. I can walk that in snowshoes in about an hour and a half, so I don't think I'll be missing work.

    I've actually only called out of work once in my whole life (I'm 26). I had a nasty case of gastroenteritis. I went to the clinic and got 2 liters of IV fluids along with some sort of anti-naseau med. I was at work by 1 PM. I don't believe in sick/snow days.
  7. by   LauraF, RN
    When I worked LTC, we did live in the "boon docks" and the roads got bad and the city would not do anything to the roads until it was done doing whatever it was doing. But we have a facility van. If you said you couldn't get in the Executive director or the DON would come get the van and bring you in. You were on your own to find your way home, but they would get you there. They also fed staff that was stranded.
  8. by   kmrmom42
    I just had to weigh in on this topic. I lived my entire life (until the past 14 months) in New England. My first job was as a nurse's aide when I was 16 getting paid $1.10 an hour. From that time on I understood that a snowstorm was no excuse not to make my best attempt to get to work or to try to get a ride from the facility where I was working if I could. I always lived AT LEAST a 20 minute drive from work, more usually a 45 minute drive. My one and only serious car accident was when I was an inexperienced 17 year old driver trying to make it to work for 7am in snow and ice.
    So, when I moved to Florida and we had hurricanes I was confused by the way things are handled here. I was not scheduled to work for the first hurricane so I didn't go in. No problem. But I was scheduled for 7 pm for the second hurricane. The storm had begun and I heard on the radio that the roads would be closed to all but "essential personnel" after 6 pm in our area. So, I left early for work to get there before 6 pm (I now live only 9 miles from the hospital). When I arrived I got incredulous looks from everyone..."WHAT ARE YOU DOING HERE?" I said, "I am scheduled to work tonight". They informed me that I had not been expected to come in. The day shift had had their families bring them things to stay and sometimes even the families moved into the conference rooms and pets into the basement. And, I was informed, now that I was there I could not leave! So, I ended up being stuck there with all the others for a couple of days with no supplies of my own.
    Fortunately, with the third hurricane our boss initiated a system where we signed up in advance to either work during the storm or work the relief for the hurricane workers after the storm. That was a much better system but I still didn't get it. If I could get to work through I don't know how many blizzards in my many years of healthcare employment why could't people get to work during a hurricane?
    P.S. We also almost had a delivery of a severely preterm patient (we have no NICU) at our facility during the second storm because the ambulances wouldn't run!!! Now that REALLY shocked me!
  9. by   DDRN4me
    I am laughing and nodding as i read this post. I live in Massachusetts, and we are currently in the middle of a blizzard with about 26 inches of snow on the ground outside my house...dh has been out most of the day "playing " .I did a brief visit last night in the middle of it, and will go out again for the scheduled visit at 8 pm tonite. its my job, plain and simple. I may not work in a facility now, but in home care, there are people depending on you to get there. I have 4 wheel drive, and know enough to leave early and drive slowly. I guess its the way I am, have done various jobs in nursing since I was 16, and would not even think of calling out because of weather. As a matter of fact, my dd is getting dressed to work at her restaurant job because they are open. We did luck out and have snow days for school tomorrow, so i will enjoy that!! Stay warm and dry everyone!!
  10. by   needs help
    I so agree with you. I live in South Carolina. We don't get as much snow & ice as New York ( I grew up in Mass and married a New Yorker) I live 50 miles from where I work in the boonies . Last year we had a HORRIBLE ice storm followed by snow the ice was (no joke) 1/2 inch solid on the roads. I worked 12 hour shifts three straight. In the afternoon after my first 12 hour shift(that had turned into 14) my husband received a call saying i needed to come into work early. well he knew better that to wake me early (ha ha)anyway when I got up I called work and was told that the disaster plan was in effect and all staff needed to come in early if there was going to be a problem getting in later. well everything looked fine where I lived but boy was it different on the way in. It usually takes me 1 hour to get to work that trip was 2 1/2 with an additional 20min to get up the hill at my hospital. I ended up working 20 hours because all l of the CNA's and most of the RN's called in. (many being closer) All of my night shift also went home. I agree if I made it in at 15 mph for 50miles those that live 2-20 miles could have at least tried! there were a few that did try and a few that made it in and all credit goes to them. good luck with your friend. She should stay at the Hospital and come in early if needbe. I as well as many others have done it!!!!!
  11. by   Ruby Vee
    i've been working as a nurse for 27 years, and somehow have always managed to make it to work during the snow emergencies. i've walked to work in a snowstorm -- only lived 2 miles away then. i've skiied to work -- 5 miles. everyone else had to stay overnight, but i got to go home at the end of my shift and ski 5 miles the other direction! once when i lived in seattle, i went to spokane to stay with friends for christmas and ended up driving 300 miles in a snowstorm to get to work for night shift christmas night! i left at 10am -- got there about 10pm. i was late, but i made it in! i got through snoqualamie pass just before they closed the pass!

    [color=#2f4f4f]i'm always amazed, though, at how many people don't even try. there's always an excuse. "i have young children and i can't leave them." "i don't have 4wd." "i live so far away!" "i can't get out of my driveway." (this from someone who hadn't even left her couch yet.) it's the work ethic thing. either you have it or you don't. i wish there was some way to legislate work ethic . . . maybe i'd get to go home at the end of my shift!
  12. by   luvrn
    I am wondering what the single parents did when they work 7-3p, storm comes in, and they mandated you to stay, no family in area, child in daycare that will close, how have you handled that??? Daycare isn't staying open, you don't know anybody.....and manager doesn't care its not her problem....
  13. by   Ruby Vee
    Quote from luvrn
    i am wondering what the single parents did when they work 7-3p, storm comes in, and they mandated you to stay, no family in area, child in daycare that will close, how have you handled that??? daycare isn't staying open, you don't know anybody.....and manager doesn't care its not her problem....
    i've worked in hospitals that had on-site day care for children (and elders) for snow emergencies. no day care for pets, though. and i've worked places where there was no day care . . . nurses got together and helped each other out. a nurse who wanted to be able to go home at the end of her shift volunteered her teenaged daughter to babysit for a couple of moms on the next shift. a nurse who had 4wd gave another nurse a ride to work, and the second nurse's husband watched both sets of kids. if there's warning that a storm is coming, there's time to work something out. i can understand if child care plans fall through. what i don't understand is someone who won't even bother to try to work something out.