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[转载]Julien FangCaoDi school accident 芳草地学校事故

(2011-06-09 19:38:54)


[转载]Julien <wbr>FangCaoDi <wbr>school <wbr>accident <wbr>芳草地学校事故

 The Accident 


On Monday morning November 15th at 10.30am, Julien and his classmates in the international section of the Ritan Park campus of Fangcaodi (芳草地) were outside with the teacher on the school’s main playground for outdoor activities and morning break. Julien was lying on the ground, resting briefly next to a pile of his classmate’s clothes.

20101115日上午10:30, 北京芳草地国际学校日坛校区内,我儿子Julien正和同学们一起由学校国际部的老师带领在学校的大操场上活动。当时Julien正躺在操场的中央,周围是他和其他小朋友的衣服。

The driver of one of the school’s senior administrators got into the school’s car (a Toyota Camry, pictured below) to leave the campus. Instead of backing up and heading towards the exit, he did a large circle on the playground to maneuver towards the exit, failing to notice Julien. Julien saw the car coming but didn’t have time to move away in time. The car drove over Julien. Julien entered from the front of the car, between the wheels, then was snagged by the undercarriage and dragged 8.4 meters before exiting from between the two back wheels. The minimum clearance between the ground and the car where Julien passed was only 10cm. The driver noticed nothing throughout this entire time, only realizing what had happened when a teacher ran screaming towards him, then picking up Julien from the rear of the car.

学校的一部丰田凯美瑞(下面照片中黑色的那辆车)当时正静静停在操场一侧。 一名学校高层领导的司机坐进车里并打算将车驶出学校。照常理,这位司机应该先倒车,然后沿一侧车道将车子驶向学校的出口。但是谁也没想到,司机竟然原地掉头,歪歪扭扭地直接斜穿过操场,朝校门口驶去,也没有看到在他前方路面上的JulienJulien看到车子朝自己冲过来,但是完全没有时间从地上爬起来并逃走。车子从正前方直撞向他,他被车子带倒后卡在4个车轮中间被拖行了足足8.4米。由始至终,司机都没有注意到这一切,直到带课的老师看到后尖叫着冲过去,然后把Julien从车后抱出来。

[转载]Julien <wbr>FangCaoDi <wbr>school <wbr>accident <wbr>芳草地学校事故
Julien entered from the front of the car where the first bag on the right is placed on the ground, and exited from the back of the car next to the second bag (on the left, next to the policeman taking a picture). This picture was taken during the police reconstruction of the accident, with the actual car and the driver shown. The driver is shown in the middle of the photo, wearing a beige jacket.



[转载]Julien <wbr>FangCaoDi <wbr>school <wbr>accident <wbr>芳草地学校事故

The bottom of the car, where julien passed. Maximum height clearance of 10 cm. 


The teacher immediately ran with Julien in her arms to the nearby Ritan children hospital, from where she contacted us.


What were cars doing on a school playground for children? The school’s explanation is that due to construction around the campus, there is no readily available parking spot for the school’s staff. To avoid walking from nearby parking lots, the school’s management and principal teachers prefer to park and maneuver where the children play and rest.




This was however not the first incident, and concerns had already been expressed to the school that cars in the playground represented a serious hazard for the safety of the school children. A few months prior a children playing was reaching for a wandering playing ball under a parked car when the vehicle’s driver was preparing to drive away.  Another teacher saw the situation and stopped the car from driving at the last minute, avoiding a terrible accident. The incident was brought up to the school’s management and the Parent Teacher Association (PTA) made repeated requests to ban all cars from the playground. The request was denied and ignored, making possible the conditions for Julien’s accident.


Immediately after the accident Julien lay on the ground with visible and obvious head and neck injuries. The first reaction from the school staff was to pick-up and lift Julien from the ground. this points to a serious lack of awareness and preparedness of first response in case of an accident. Any basic first emergency response training teaches that patient with head, neck or back injuries should never be moved until professional medical staff with appropriate equipment arrives on the scene.


Julien’s Injuries 


Julien sustained the following external injuries: a 2.5 cm long wound at the back of his skull; trauma to the left half of his face which was scratched and swollen; a patch of skin (4 x 5 cm) on his shoulder was scraped away; and scratches and bruises on his legs, back, and feet.

外伤:脑后2.5cm 的伤口,已缝合;左脸擦伤并严重红肿;肩部皮肤严重破损,约4 x 5 厘米的皮肤完全撕裂;腿部、背部及足部多处擦伤及瘀斑。 

Internal injuries: lesions and internal bleeding of both lungs including a pneumothorax (perforation of the lungs), a small hematoma (internal bleeding) in the brain, internal bleeding around the eyes and ears, a crushed lower back vertebra, and dislocation of the top 3 cervicals. He miraculously suffered no apparent mental impairments or neurological damages.


After initial examination and stabilization, we decided to move Julien to the Beijing New Century Children Hospital by ambulance (where 18 months earlier Julien had been very well treated for Kawasaki disease). Julien’s mother Hong was flying that morning to Guangzhou, and she was notified of this accident only when landing in Guangzhou airport at 2pm.


Julien never lost conscience and always remained fully aware of the situation. He was however in great pain from the multiple injuries, especially the neck, head and lower back. Adding insult to injury, the neck support brace placed on him rested directly on his shoulder wound, and he had to rest his head exactly where he had his rear head wound and stitches.


He was ordered to rest on his back for several weeks wearing a neck brace. His face injuries improved but his neck and back pains remained acute. We camped at the hospital day and night to comfort and encourage him, pushing doctors to try to get a clearer and full picture of his condition.



[转载]Julien <wbr>FangCaoDi <wbr>school <wbr>accident <wbr>芳草地学校事故

[转载]Julien <wbr>FangCaoDi <wbr>school <wbr>accident <wbr>芳草地学校事故

Julien’s evacuation


On Thursday November 18th, a doctor from SOS International in Beijing came to the hospital to evaluate Julien’s condition and confer with the Chinese doctors. His recommendation was that there were too many unknowns regarding his cervical condition, potential additional skull fractures, and that he should be evacuated to a center of medical excellence.


A parallel consultation (based on the CT Scan – X rays sent to Switzerland) with a Swiss specialist came to the same conclusion. His neck injuries were the most troublesome, and if not treated correctly immediately, could lead to permanent disabilities.


We took the decision on Friday morning Nov 19th to evacuate Julien to Switzerland where he could get the best possible care. We contacted REGA (a Swiss air ambulance and evacuation services) and they immediately dispatched a plane with a medical team.


The school management was opposed to a medical evacuation and the principal told us that any decisions regarding medical treatments should be made by joint accord of the parents AND the school.



The plane landed on Sunday Nov 21st, and after a mandatory rest for the pilots, we left for Switzerland Monday Nov 22nd.



[转载]Julien <wbr>FangCaoDi <wbr>school <wbr>accident <wbr>芳草地学校事故

[转载]Julien <wbr>FangCaoDi <wbr>school <wbr>accident <wbr>芳草地学校事故

Julien’s condition and treatment




Upon arrival at the University Hospital of Lausanne CHUV, Julien was further examined by a pediatrician orthopedist and pediatrician neurosurgeon and underwent an MRI examination. They confirmed a C0 / C1 dislocation (atlantooccipital dislocation: a misalignment of the base of the skull and the first cervical)


Julien was immediately put into “extension” (i.e. lying down on a special bed and his head is pulled upwards using a special head support and a set of pulleys and weights) for 5 days.


The doctor confirmed that it is a rare injury, as most of the time the patient does not survive the cervical dislocation, which is typically fatal on the spot. If they do survive, they often remain tetraplegic (paralyzed from the neck down) and sometimes under artificial ventilation for the rest of their lives.


Julien spent a total of 4 weeks flat and bed ridden without moving at all. After this time a special neck brace was tailored made from him, using a Swiss technology which scanned his head to make a computer 3D model to produce a polymer solid model. The neck brace allowed him to move and get out of the hospital a few weeks later.



[转载]Julien <wbr>FangCaoDi <wbr>school <wbr>accident <wbr>芳草地学校事故

Julien stayed at home with his grandparents in Switzerland to recover for 3 months, receiving home schooling in the afternoon. 3 months after the accident in mid February, he was finally able to take out his neck brace and resume a normal life while limiting his physical activities.


Julien is restricted from several sports activities like diving, gymnastics, contact sports, roller coasters, and certain playground for the foreseeable future.

He suffered psychologically as well, having occasional panic attacks when he sees parked or slow moving cars. He underwent psychiatric treatment while in Switzerland.



The school’s reaction and aftermath


Despite having various school staff come and go at the hospital, and entering the patient’s room without warning, we never received any explanation as to what exactly happened, the circumstances of the accident, and even how Julien was hit. The school management met with us on several occasions and told us it would be best for this incident not to be publicized and communicated.


Frustrated by this lack of information and transparency, we took the initiative to report the accident to the police (which had not been previously notified). The police conducted an investigation and a reenactment on the premises of the school the day before we left (pictures above of the car).  Only then did we finally understand what really happened and the exact circumstances of the accident, which were much worse than we initially thought.


How could the driver not see a kid and a heap of clothes on the playground? Why didn’t the driver reverse out instead of doing a large circle among children playing at the school recess?  Was he completely distracted / under medication / or even drunk? We still do not know. However he still works at the school as a driver.


Security cameras are constantly monitoring and video recording the school’s playground. When we asked for the tape of that day as to see the accident, we were told that the camera was out of order that specific day.


The following week after our arrival in Switzerland, contacted by parents as to Julien’s whereabouts we realized that nobody knew that an accident had happened at the school, and the cars were still coming in and out of the playground as if nothing had happened.


We informed several parents and the PTA. The initial outrage from parents forced the school to accept to limit the speed of cars on the playground. It is only after a tense meeting between the PTA and the school management and under threat of media intervention that they agreed to ban cars from the playground during school times.


Upon our return to Beijing, the school told us we had to follow the “Chinese legal system”, that is we have to sue the school in court, if we wanted to get any form of compensation and that any cost incurred out of China would not be covered. We also discovered on this occasion that the accident had not been reported to the higher authorities in the education bureau which governs the school. 



Julien has needlessly suffered excruciating pain and trauma, and we as parents have experienced something that no parent should have to – the horror of learning of your child’s accident followed by hour-by-hour discoveries of new, life threatening injuries, compounded by the frustration of dealing by the lack of transparency or accountability of the school authorities who have appeared more concerned with covering things up than with addressing the causes and ensuring that no such accident occurs again.

Julien没有必要遭受难以忍受的痛苦和创伤,作为父母的我们也经历了其他父母都不应该经历的事情 可怕的认识到孩子发生意外后还有接二连三不断地还有有新事情发生,生命受到了威胁,其次处理中缺乏透明度,比起追究事故确保不会再有同样的意外发生, 学校更关心的是掩盖事实无疑加剧了我们的挫折感。


We have lost trust in the management of FangCaoDi, and have moved Julien to a new school, where he has a lot of catching-up to do. 


We hope that this accident can at least serve as a call to action that the school must take children’s safety more seriously. Measures we recommend include implementing CPR and First Aid training for teachers, strict traffic control regulations, and regular monitoring of safety procedures.


Yet the school’s management reaction has been to initially cover up the incident and then limit any changes to the strict minimum. Fangcaodi aspires to be an internationally renowned institution, but the actions of the school’s administration fall far short of that.




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