Monday, August 30, 2010

911... what's your emergency?

So a regular trip to the pool on Sunday aftenoon led to an eventful afternoon. Chris and Ceiba were in the water, while I sat in the sun (after being the Round 1 parent for the first duration in the cold water). There was another family in the pool and our lifeguard Camelia. A loud pop sounded from the pool room. Camelia went to check it out, and a canister had burst, sending hazardous chlorine gas into the room. The gas hit her as she opened the door, pushing her back and taking her breath away. We all quickly got out of the pool and rounded up children to the courtyard, while my well trained First Responder husband checked out Camelia's exposure and got her away from the pool. She called her company and the fire alarms started ringing through the complex.

With amazing response time, the fire department arrived. We could hear them race through town and park in the front of the building. Chris stabilized Camelia and had some others neighbors stay with her while he went into the building to meet the firefighters. The hallways had filled with gas and people were coming out with teared eyes, mostly acting oblivious to the alarms and not getting away from the building. One guard even came straight to the pool door and began to open it before we all yelled to stay back. He met the firefighters, briefed them and took them to the courtyard.

Chris is a cool cucumber, always has been. His years of experience and training have him very prepared for emergencies and tense situations, from vehicle accidents to a three year old bleeding from bouncing off the bed onto the corner of a nightstand (our previous evening). My job while he's putting out fires? To be one less thing on his mind. To be out of harm's way with a child on my hip... and my mouth shut. This I can do :)
So as the firemen & hazmat team worked, EMS checked out Camelia (who is fine, thank goodness), while the complex occupants sat on the curb and chatted and we... sat in our swimwear in front of them... with no car keys...or wallets...or cell phones. After the all clear, the firemen tested our apartment, since it touches the poolroom which was hazardous minutes before. We went home, changed clothes and went out for dinner (since we WAY missed ours which was thawing on the counter).

And Ceiba slept in our room for a night, in a pillow-blanket bed in the corner made for a queen. She was nestled in and asleep in no time at all. Glad the day ended with everyone safe and sound. And always glad to have our crisis intervention expert doing his best to keep us all out of harm's way.


  1. Now that's a Sunday! Glad all is OK

  2. I am always so impressed by "cool as a cucumber" folks! I just shriek and freak in moments like that!

    Glad all are good and no one was seriously hurt!

  3. Sounds like maybe problems just follow Chris around. Glad everything worked out OK. The real question is was the pool fixed so that does not happen again.

  4. oh dear, how scary but glad everyone is ok.