Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Going for a jog... and calling 911

Finally got some nice weather here in St. John's, Newfoundland. So I went for a run to see downtown from the east side of the harbour. You can see the GPS track here.

I saw some quaint houses on the far shore, at the bottom of Signal Hill.

I also spotted what looks like fossilized ocean floor (something I saw earlier today in the Geo Centre).

I ran to the end of the road, to Cahill Point. While looking around, I heard a teenage boy yelling "Help..." I turned around and saw him standing on the top of a rocky hill, waving his arms. He was yelling, "HELP, my friend's dying!" Now, I was skeptical, but thought I'd better take some action. I waved back and called 9-1-1. I told the 911 operator what was going on, and that I wasn't sure if it was legit. He asked where I was, and I replied "Fort Amherst" (and he repeated "for-dammers"). There was another kid on the cliff who didn't seem too concerned, so I told the operator that I wasn't sure if it really was an emergency. He said he'd probably send someone anyway, and took my phone number (I run with my iPhone... spare me the geek comments).

As I was leaving, another kid came down the rocky hill slowly, and I asked him if he knew the kids up top. He said he did, and that they were joking. Turns out, the kid on top was just teasing his somewhat chubby friend who couldn't make it all the way up the hill. The chubby kid apologized for his friends, and I told him he should tell his buddies to look up the story of "The Boy Who Cried Wolf". Just then, a fire rescue vehicle came around the corner, lights flashing.

After finding out what was up, the fireman radioed the station to ask the other vehicles enroute to "stand down". Except for one... I'm wondering if it was a police car on its way to set the kids straight.

Incidentally, a couple with two children also heard the boy's calls for help, and we briefly discussed whether or not to call 911. Turns out, they are also from Waterloo, and live about a 10 minute walk from me. Small world... when one attends math conferences, anyway.

1 comment:

  1. Wow! I can't believe that those boys were fooling around. Glad that everyone was okay in the end.