Today we had our practice fire drill. For any size company – heck, even at home – it’s good to have procedures in place, in case of emergency. Since I am in a wheelchair, we have a special evacuation chair which I sit in for the drill. (I climb out of my own chair and into that one and someone pushes it. There are special runners on the bottom which enable it to go down stairs.)

I remember the first time I used that chair. It was very scary, because, obviously, I had no control. I relied completely on the person who had the handle at the back. Since I fell down a flight of stairs (handle of a manual wheelchair came loose because someone had been playing with it), I’ve always been nervous of stairs. As you know, I have brittle bones, so the thought of falling and breaking something is always at the back of my mind.

The most scary part is getting to the top of the stairs, because who ever is pushing has to lift up the back to kick out the wheels. All you see is the floor falling away in front of you and the incredible feeling that you’ll fall head first.

Thankfully, I’m fairly used to it now and we can take the stairs quite quickly. This time, it was so quick, that we actually got to the bottom before the other guys had brought my chair down in the lift.

Where I work, we’re supposed to take a “Grab Bag” and throw all our belongings that we want to take with in an emergency into it. I find them quite pointless. The way I see it, you’re wasting precious seconds which you could be using escaping the building by opening the grab bag, picking up your things and throwing them inside. I like the idea that you have your bag, throw it over your shoulder and run.

At the rally point, I don’t remember seeing many grab bags there, so it seems many share my view …

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