We've gathered the creepiest calls that EMTs and paramedics have ever been sent on. And trust us, the stories make even the grittiest episode of House look like the Care Bears.
Woman cooks herself in scalding-hot bath
"We responded to an apartment building when the caretaker had called us. His initial report was that he went to check on a suite because water had been reported flooding into the hallway. He informed us there was a deceased lady in the tub. He said he saw her and immediately backed out without touching anything.
We entered the suite. It was filled with steam. The humidity had started peeling the paint off the walls in sheets. There was also the smell of cooked meat.
Upon entering the bathroom we found the supposed deceased, seated in the tub, with the hot water running. From the looks of it she had been there a while. The skin on her body, all the way from toes to sternum had started separating. Much like the paint on the walls, it was bubbled and coming up in sheets.
I checked for vitals while someone turned off the water and the others went to get a bag and radio for a can (when a body is badly decomposed, we put them in a sheet metal box).
I almost shit my pants when I found signs of life. The lady had a pulse. She wasn't really responsive, but she was breathing shallow, had a heart beat, and was looking at us. We had to get her out.
We radioed for EMS and informed them we had a live patient with at least 80% burns. They were a few minutes out so we started to get the patient ready for transport.
I don't remember what we were doing when we noticed the water draining from the tub. But what we saw was her torso essentially degloving itself as the water receded. We immediately plugged the bathtub and continued working her.
When EMS arrived we had to transfer her to the stretcher. That's where things got ugly.
We planned to gently lift her out of the tub, and place her on the stretcher. However, as soon as we touched her, her skin was coming off in sheets. I remember saying, 'Sorry ma'am, but we have to do this' as I picked up my section and came away with almost all of the skin I contacted stuck to my arms. That was the only time she made a sound. She probably couldn't feel it due to the nerve damage, but I'm pretty sure she knew she had lost almost all of her skin from the chest down.
The water was still extremely hot, so we were also getting burned while doing this.
We managed to get her onto the stretcher and EMS took her away.
When the bathtub was drained, there was a sheet of skin stuck to the bottom. We had to scrape it off and bag it. I still can't each certain chicken dishes because of this.
We figure she was in the tub and the water got cool. So she turned it on with her toe. She must've had a stroke and could not turn it off again. Being an apartment it had pretty much unlimited hot water. So that poor lady sat there for approximately three days, cooking.
She did not survive. We don't get a lot of follow up on calls, but I heard she passed away.
Between a stroke, and severe burns, it wasn't likely that she'd make it. But we treat every patient like they have a chance. The human body is a weird and wonderful thing. Sometimes people do make it through some pretty terrible things."
Woman with dementia lives with her husband's corpse for three weeks
"The call was for an older woman, lying in bed. When we get there, the smell is horrendous of a dead body. There are millions of flies everywhere and a little old lady in lying in the bed, alive. About five feet away, there is a body covered up by a sheet. The lady was a dementia patient, and her husband (the deceased) was the primary caregiver. Based on the number of flies and state of decomposition, the police estimated the guy had been dead for about three weeks. The woman must have been getting some food out of the refrigerator, but it was totally empty by the time we arrived.
The creepiest part happened on the way to the hospital with the woman, she said, 'I hope that nice man on the floor is OK'."
Elderly man burnt to a crisp while smoking near his oxygen machine
"Had a call just after I came on duty of a elderly male with possible high fever. We didn't have much more information because the caller (his elderly wife) was, according to the dispatcher, 'hard to understand'. Anyway we head out get there seven minutes or so later.
As we go in, the wife is sitting at the kitchen table just inside the door, so we ask her what's going on. She answers that he 'has been complaining he is too hot all morning'. We go into the next room which is dark due to curtains covering the windows but there is enough light to see a dead man sitting in a chair. Now mind you he was not recently dead, I'm talking blackened-face, rot/rat-bites-around-the-mouth, wasn't-complaining-this-morning type of dead.
I set down my equipment and my partner goes to turn on the light next to his chair so we can verify the obvious. As she goes to reach for the light the dead man groans and reaches for her hand.
After collectively shitting our pants we jump into action, come to find out he was on oxygen and a smoker. He was 'complaining' about being hot because he was literally burning up. What looked like signs of death on his face were scorch marks and melted plastic.
To answer the obvious question, I don't know. He was still alive when we got him to the hospital and I never asked what happened to him after that."
Woman tries to kill herself with an old saw
"This woman was clearly struggling mentally. She went into her basement and started sawing at her wrists horizontally with a rusty hack saw, bleeds a good amount, and then starts walking around the house. She wasn't dying quick enough, so she sat down in a chair in the middle of the living room, and started going at her wrists again, this time with a pair of scissors.
I was the second person inside the house. It looked like a massacre. We searched the house top to bottom, fully expecting to find multiple dead bodies in there. I've never seen so much blood in my life. Every single room had a trail of blood in it.
The woman was found on a chair in the living room. Rigor mortis had contorted her body into a really strange, unnatural pose, and her face was haunting. Literally the stuff of nightmares. Her wrists had huge chunks of skin/veins/muscle missing from them. Saying she slit her wrists is inaccurate. She ripped them to pieces."