August 13th, 2006

  • kwanboa

Gun mechanics: pistol loading/unloading

Clearly I am not Googling the correct phrases, as all I get are videos offering to tell me how to shoot a gun and take care of it. No help, as I don't wish to spend $29.95 for a little detail.

In my fic, there are pistols such as the CIA uses...circa 2003, if that makes a difference. Now, I've figured out that to load a pistol like this (I have no idea about brands or anything, so I may be off), one pulls the slide back, which takes a bullet out of the chamber and loads it into the barrel. Fantastic, eh?

I need to know how to undo that. And I have no sweet freaking clue how. Could someone tell me how, using proper gun lingo? And if I'm incorrect with the whole slide mechanism, please set me right?
firefly - kaylee's parasol

Driving to the ocean from Washington DC

In this story, I have a character who, for mad reasons of her own, is driving east from Washington DC. All she really wants is to get to the ocean, and she doesn't really care how long or what route she takes to she gets there, only that she does get there. She's not very stable, mentally speaking, at the time of the journey, so she's unlikely to take the best, quickest, most direct route, especially as she hasn't done any research beforehand but is basically just getting into the car and driving.

What I want to know is what route she'd be most likely to stumble on, what she might see on the way - little things, like what the landscape would be like (we're talking October/November, some year in the mid-90s) - and where on the coast she'd be likely to end up.

(I'm having trouble researching this, as looking at maps online doesn't really give me a feel for real places, and besides, it's hard to use them and take account of the fact the journey isn't planned. I'd appreciate any tips on searching, too. Thanks.)
silly bitch

Questions Regarding Medical Evacs and ICU

I've Googled this, searched Wikipedia, and combed through the various web pages of corporations which manufacture helicopters used for medical evacuation to trauma centers but I can't find the answers to my questions. The same seems to be true for ICU procedures. For that question, I phoned a few friends who work at trauma centers and they didn't know the exact policy either.

The story scenario is as follows: two patients, one adult and one in her late teens, found in the New Mexico badlands during snowstorm. One has a gunshot wound and the other has pneumonia. Because of the location and because both are critical by the time they're found, they'd need to be flown to the nearest level one trauma center (I already have the location of the facility figured out). I need to know the following:

1. How many are on a flight crew?

2. What does each crew member typically handle?

3. How many can the typical medical evac helicopter handle, assuming one of civilian design for a civilian hospital or search and rescue service?

4. Could/would the helicopter ever carry non-injured passengers (such as relatives)?

Regarding ICU:

1. Would either patient be allowed visitors since neither has any family (the one is a police officer and the other is his ward)?

2. How many visitors does an ICU unit typically allow and for how long?

3. How many beds does an individual ICU room hold? Would they place the two of them together?

The local inquiries were, incidentally, no help because the hospital doesn't enforce its rules. Since they don't enforce the rules regarding visitors (my husband, for instance, was allowed to stay with me 24/7 for five days) none of those I asked have any clue what the actual policy might be.
Teragramm Tara

Aviation rules re: private planes

Google cannot tell me this--it's too "what iffy." Hope you can help.

I have a sci-fi story where there's an emergency in which I need to move one character from Cleveland to California in as short a time as possible. He has a private plane and he can fly, but how quickly can a flight plan be filed (if that's the right expression) and permission asked for and received to take off? How much and what kind of red tape? If he decides to take off without proper permissions (it really is an emergency of cataclysmic proportions--sci-fi, remember) how likely is it that Homeland Security or the air force will try to shoot him down, or whatever it is they do with pilots who take off without filing a flight plan? Thank you.
wind call your name

Sloss Furnaces

Has anyone ever visited Sloss Furnaces, or the Fright Furnace? I am trying to get an idea of what the place would look like as you approached it, but am having some difficulty getting pics of where visitors would enter, or upon approach.