Lifting assist for petite EMT

JanetDoe

Forum Crew Member
30
0
0
When I was in school.our instructor said one thing us petite EMTs can do is use our belt buckle to catch on the gurnee to help us lift the weight Anyone else do this? Any suggestions as to what kind of belt or buckle to get?
 

NomadicMedic

EMS Edumacator
11,186
5,677
113
VERY bad idea. Go to the gym and lift weights until you're able to load the stretcher correctly. Try to do it any other way is a HUGE liability and will get you, or a patient, hurt.
 
Last edited by a moderator:
OP
JanetDoe

JanetDoe

Forum Crew Member
30
0
0
I do lift weights and I can lift the stretcher, just always nice to have an extra boost if needed. But thanks.
 

Kevinf

Forum Captain
356
136
43
http://www.duluthtrading.com/store/mens/mens-accessories/work-belts-for-men/20526.aspx

Some of our petite EMTs admit to using their belts for an assist. Just be sure you can take the weight of the stretcher should the belt fail. It seems like a point of pride for some to be able to load the stretcher, but I don't mind doing it instead as I have the height to get the proper leverage to load it. Regardless of gender/size of my partner, if we have someone over 200lbs I'll bear some of the weight when the legs are lifted fully as we load.
 
Last edited by a moderator:
OP
JanetDoe

JanetDoe

Forum Crew Member
30
0
0
Thanks Kevin. Much appreciated..I think my height actually makes it harder for me than my petite frame. Im only 5"1 = (
 

mycrofft

Still crazy but elsewhere
11,322
44
48
Last edited by a moderator:

UnkiEMT

Forum Truck Monkey
Premium Member
326
5
18
I'd never heard of this, but I gotta say, it seems like an incredibly bad idea. Quite aside from the fact that I imagine the mechanics of it would be tricky (And thus likely to go wrong, like half catching and then slipping off halfway through the lift)...belts aren't designed to take that kind of a load.

Positing a very well made 1.5" leather belt, with a 1.5" overlap which is completely coated with a high quality rubber cement, then a double locking line of stitching with a 100 tex cotton thread at a 1mm spacing, and assuming that the leather is of sufficient quality that it's breakage can effectively be disregarded. Further positing a Stryker MX-PRO stretcher with a weight of 81 lbs and a normally weight distributed pt who weighs 215 lbs.

By doing some basic research (Which really just took the WA out of my WAGs, but admittedly left the G), and some rough back of the napkin calculations, I figure you've got about 30 cycles before the glue shears, and then about another 20 before you start popping stitches (The first 2-4 will have a few cycles in between popping, after that I'd anticipate a catastrophic failure.) And bear in mind, this is assuming an exceptionally well made belt.

PS: Have I mentioned that I was most of the way through an engineering degree before I dropped out to pursue EMS? Also, I spent way longer on this than I expected to, I'm assuming no one cares about how I arrived at those numbers, but if you're interested, let me know, I'll gladly share.
 
OP
JanetDoe

JanetDoe

Forum Crew Member
30
0
0
Ya know I thought this forum was to help our peers, share info and experience, not to.be condescending smartasses. For those of you that actually entertained the idea that im.brand new and dont know it all, thank you for your time.and responses. As for the rest of you, get over yourself. I thought the only stupid question was the one not asked.
 

UnkiEMT

Forum Truck Monkey
Premium Member
326
5
18
Ya know I thought this forum was to help our peers, share info and experience, not to.be condescending smartasses. For those of you that actually entertained the idea that im.brand new and dont know it all, thank you for your time.and responses. As for the rest of you, get over yourself. I thought the only stupid question was the one not asked.
Err?

I don't think anyone in this thread was particularly condescending or smartassy. I mean, I could see maybe taking mycrofft's picture as such (personally I thought it was just funny.), or perhaps my math as smartassery, though really it was just me geeking out, but as they both included actual advice, I can't see that contextually they could be considered such.

On a side note, speaking as someone who commonly trains brand new basics, you can ask me any absolutely question you have, and I will do my damndest to either give you a factual, reasoned and well-supported response, or I'll tell you I don't know and either research it with you or simply report back to you the results of my own research.

That being said, there absolutely are stupid questions, and if you ask one, don't be surprised if I make fun of you a little as I give you the answer. To a degree, that sort of response is a personal failing...I make fun of everything (including myself), however as it's a pretty common one in the field, I feel fairly confident in calling it a common trait in the personality types that get on in this field, and as such, the proper response is probably just to push back, and ideally be funny while you do it.
 

chaz90

Community Leader
Community Leader
2,735
1,270
113
I didn't really see any condescension. You asked about using your belt to help lift, and the consensus was that it sounds like a pretty awful idea.

We're happy to help new people, and I think you had a valid question that was answered fairly. Welcome to the forum :)
 
OP
JanetDoe

JanetDoe

Forum Crew Member
30
0
0
Yeah I was pretty much just refereing to croft but whatever. Wont make that mistake again. Thanks for the warm welcome.
 

Brandon O

Puzzled by facies
1,718
336
83
PS: Have I mentioned that I was most of the way through an engineering degree before I dropped out to pursue EMS? Also, I spent way longer on this than I expected to, I'm assuming no one cares about how I arrived at those numbers, but if you're interested, let me know, I'll gladly share.
Just to add to your headache, some folks wear rigger's belts that are designed (admittedly for emergencies) to support the wearer's bodyweight.

At times, I have briefly let my belt take part of the weight (emphasis on "part," it's not like you're letting go) while stair-chairing. Not something you'd want to rely on, but it has its uses.
 

CALEMT

The Other Guy/ Paramaybe?
4,072
2,892
113
VERY bad idea. Go to the gym and lift weights until you're able to load the stretcher correctly. Try to do it any other way is a HUGE liability and will get you, or a patient, hurt.
This, I have never used nor heard of using your belt. I could imagine it puts a tremendous load on your lower back. Im 6'0 150 and when I'm having trouble lifting a gurney or moving a pt I just ask for help. No shame in it, if people crack jokes because of it so be it... its your back not theirs.
 

DesertMedic66

Forum Troll
10,802
3,052
113
Ya know I thought this forum was to help our peers, share info and experience, not to.be condescending smartasses. For those of you that actually entertained the idea that im.brand new and dont know it all, thank you for your time.and responses. As for the rest of you, get over yourself. I thought the only stupid question was the one not asked.
You asked for people's thoughts on this and they gave you the responses (not really the ones you were looking for).

Lift properly. If you don't have the strength to do so then work on your strength. You don't want to be known as the EMT who can't lift the gurney. Get familiar with the gurney as that will help you a lot.

If you can't lift the gurney don't be afraid to ask for help or trade off with someone (you don't want to drop the patient or hurt your back).

I'm not trying to be an :censored::censored::censored::censored::censored::censored::censored: but "the only stupid question is the one that you don't ask" is not something that is said outside of the school environment. Yes there are stupid questions that people ask (I'm not saying yours is a stupid question).
 

Household6

Forum Asst. Chief
Premium Member
504
51
28
I think it's irresponsible for an instructor to recommend that. Belts are for keeping your pants up and looking pretty. I'm imagining the profile of the lifter, and where the weight would be; right on the lumbar area.

I don't like it, it poses a danger to the EMT and a danger to the patient if it breaks.
 

Kevinf

Forum Captain
356
136
43
In my opinion, EMS should have long ago developed good lift belts/harness designed for the stretcher as well as other devices. A proper one will place nearly all of the load on your hips and legs. It's sad that we don't have proper gear in this day and age. Moving and lifting heavy things safely with body harnesses is a fairly well solved problem.
 
Last edited by a moderator:

mycrofft

Still crazy but elsewhere
11,322
44
48
JanetDoe, my apologies.

I apologize if my reply made you feel as though I was making fun of you.
I make fun of everyone, even and especially myself, at times.

The link I posted was another very similar thread started a day or so before yours.

But I was serious about using the mental tool (especially if you have been a witness before) of asking yourself "How would I sound in front of a judge?". As in "I was unable to lift ambulance litter with that patient, so I tried to hang it on my belt".
===============
Kevinf, lifting belt and harnesses (such as for medium sized appliances) might allow you to get some loads up, but tying a load to you which you can't lift and might suddenly have to jettison could hurt you very badly.
 

Angel

Paramedic
1,201
307
83
When I was in school.our instructor said one thing us petite EMTs can do is use our belt buckle to catch on the gurnee to help us lift the weight Anyone else do this? Any suggestions as to what kind of belt or buckle to get?

not to beat a dead horse, but from another short persons perspective (im 5'2)
I HAVE heard of the belt thing but never tried it or "needed" it. I can see how it can cause harm but another female I used to work with did this all the time and hasn't had any issues (yet).

what I do is get a good firm squat, and lift using the BOTTOM lever (most gurneys have 2, the higher one for tall folks) I need all the leverage I can get.

If im at the patients head, I use the hook and lift using that instead of the actual frame. I pull it back toward me, and on all lifts try and stand as close to what youre lifting as possible/comfortable. Ive been doing that since I started, 2 years ago, and have had no issues. its low enough to get me leverage to lift as high as I need to. just squat low, feet wider than shoulder width, but make sure your feet are planted and youre pushing through your heels, while your arms are locked in an 'L'

sometimes you may need help, or to lift at the feet (less weight there) and I personally see no problem with that. especially if im working with a big hefty guy. its both your backs and the patients safety if things go awry.

good luck
 

Top