Slips Send Many Tulsans To The ER

Wednesday, January 28th 2009, 4:41 pm
By: News On 6

By Rick Wells, The News On 6

TULSA, OK -- Winter storms are inconvenient, and a lot of extra work for medical personnel. Wrecks with injuries and slips and falls have filled already busy hospital emergency rooms.  It seems like everyone has a storm story, including Tulsan Mike Clutter.  He spent a few hours in a hospital emergency room after a fall Monday night. One missed step, and he's facing surgery and weeks of rehab.

For the most part in the Tulsa area, the winter storm has been a bad driving condition, slippery sidewalk event.  EMSA has transported a much higher than normal number of slip and fall victims.  One of those was Mike Clutter; he was leaving the AC/DC concert at the BOK Center on Monday night when things took a turn for the worse.

"Walking across the street, went to step up on the curb when I did my foot slipped and went the wrong way," said Mike Clutter.

He broke it in three places.  Clutter has a surgery consultation on Friday.

Although conditions outside were improving on Wednesday, at the St. John Medical Center emergency room, there was still a steady stream of new business.

"We had a 15% increase in our daily volume related to just slips and falls," said St. John's Heather Lorenz.

Heather Lorenz is the clinical manager in the emergency room at St. John.  She says there's usually a surge at the beginning of a storm like this as conditions outside change and another later on toward the end.

"We'll continue to have increases. Motor vehicles and falls because people think it's better.  The snow's gone but the ice is still there," said St. John's Heather Lorenz.

Mike Clutter says his ankle really only hurts when he has to move around, but he can tell you about dealing with the ice.

"People need to realize, just like driving, you gotta slow down when you're walking on ice," said Mike Clutter, who fell after Monday's AC/DC concert.

AC/DC's latest album and the tour title is Black Ice.  That now has new meaning for Mike Clutter.