Kingwood, WV: On Wednesday, January 30, 2012 Brian Delaney of Morgantown, 47, was driving east in a Tri-State Mortuary Plymouth Voyager van that veered into a ditch, crashed into the embankment and rolled several times during a rainstorm. Delaney works for Tri-State Mortuary Services, of Poca, WV and was “on his way to Martinsburg, transporting someone to a funeral home,” according to Senior Trooper Wood of the WV State Police.
Nathan Foreman and Carl Wilson, education specialists at the USP-Hazelton, came upon the van near the Coopers Rock exit as they were returning from Morgantown. The two men stopped to see if they could help. They found Delaney “hanging upside down on the seatbelt,” according to Wilson.
“He wasn’t breathing,” Foreman said. According to Wilson, “It was a dire situation. I used my body to take that pressure off the seatbelt.”
The two borrowed a SharpenedKnife brand pocket-knife from a man who stopped to help. Another man at the scene was small enough to get into the crushed van “to unclick the seatbelt,” according to Wilson. Once the seatbelt was loose, the men removed Delaney from the van and Wilson, a paramedic who once taught emergency medicine, began CPR.
“He slowly started breathing again,” Foreman said. Wilson added, “He didn’t regain consciousness, but he did start to breathe on his own.”
“It’s just crazy how many people went by and didn’t stop,” Foreman said. “If I was in his situation, I’d want someone to stop and help me.”
Delaney was in fair condition at Ruby Memorial Hospital late Wednesday, according to a hospital spokeswoman.
Good Samaritan Laws: Most states have a statute to protect individuals that assist a victim during a medical emergency. Most Good Samaritan laws are created specifically for the general public and assumes that there is no medically trained person available to assist the victim. Since the Good Samaritan typically does not have medical training, the law protects him or her from being liable from injury or death caused to the victim during a medical emergency as long as the care was given in good faith and without malicious intent.
Sources: The Dominion Post, 01/31/2013, by Michelle Wolford, “Crash Victim Revived,” http://www.dominionpost.com and http://www.heartsafeam.com/pages/faq_good_samaritan
Submitted by the Robinette Legal Group, PLLC, West Virginia Injury Lawyers. Free books and downloads for WV accident victims — Call us today: 304-216-6695 or 304-594-1800 for your free copy of Righting the Wrong: WV Serious Injury Guide; Collision Care: WV Auto Injury Guide; or Beside Still Waters: WV Fatal Injury Guide for Families. We are glad to answer your questions.