The Window Jumper
Be warned this
is the event was the most truamatic incident I've been involved with to
date and is the reason I feel so strongly about the need for a harm reduction
approach to replace the present "war on drugs".
The emergency in a rave in
London 4th April 1999
Ref cad3177 of 4th April
Bethnal Green Police station
The rave took place in a derelict
6 story office block and the incident
happened on the top floor. It was daylight and the large "glass wall"
windows let the light flood in to show a somewhat trashed open plan
office room full of trashed people. There was intense techno echoing around
this vast room and there were maybe a couple of hundred people dancing
and perhaps another hundred or so sitting around the edge of the room.
I took a break and sat down
for a chill with a friend, as we were
talking someone, totally off his nut, runs over to me, slaps me (gently)
on the head and runs away. I didn't think too much of it, but a bit
later he does it again to someone else. I'm watching him as he is
clearly going over the top, rolling around on the floor and then running
around the room.
Suddenly, he runs toward me
again, but slightly to my left, and smashes
into one of the large glass windows which shatters. He seems OK though
and goes back to his insane running around.
A group of us are concerned
about him and we talk about what to do.
However, before we can come to a conclusion, he comes running from the
crowd again. I see him and I can tell from his eyes, this is it. I try
and grab him but fail, then run with all my speed behind him shouting
"stop him, stop him", but he reaches the window and dives head first at
Glass smashes as he goes out
the window with a sound I will never
forget, but someone catches his feet at the last minute and pulls him
back in, we're 6 floors up remember. He gets up and runs again, but this
time there is a lot of blood. I catch him and I see the horrific injury
to his stomach, a huge deep cut from the broken glass, indeed I see
internal organs exposed. I had wondered what would happen in a place
like this if there was an emergency, now I was going to find out. A dim
and distant first aid lesson comes to mind - "stop the bleeding".
He is wild, and tries to run
again so I grab him and begin to wrestle
him to the ground, within seconds I have help, as we are struggling, a
woman stares at me with a "what can I do?" expression, I shout "get
shirt or something to stop the bleeding"
Within a very short space of
time we have a team of about six people
applying first aid. The woman had returned with some kind of shirt
she knew more about applying the pressure pad than I did, someone else
checked carefully for glass fragments, someone dials 999 on a mobile.
get the situation under control and I hear a voice saying "The ambulance
on its way, mate"
We get the music stopped and
suddenly its very quiet, the local police
arrive very quickly, I believe they are met at the door
and escorted to the scene.
They are given every possible
help and assistance and gradually take
control, everyone talks in low voices, we do as we are told. Someone
cradles his head and talks in a low voice, giving encouragement.
Paramedics arrive in minutes followed by the ambulance crew, and we
surrender the situation to them. After extensive emergency preparation,
he is taken out on a stretcher.
Nobody was asked to do any
particular job as a part of the team, simply
people saw something needed doing and got on and did it.
The guy was out of there very
quickly and off to hospital, I doubt he
would have had faster attention in a legal place. Police
re-enforcement's turned up but stayed outside. I was left there, covered
in blood and very shaken but with a strange feeling of having just saved
someone's' life. I've never done that before.
The police, it has to be said,
were also wonderful, they were calm and
polite and accepted help until they were able to take full control.
The person concerned has made
full recovery, although is perhaps
somewhat shaken by the experience, we are still in contact via e-mail.
This was caused by LSD, he
had taken about 10 tabs, way, way too much.