"There was sort of this beat where everybody in the emergency department sort of stopped for a second. And it was almost like you could hear each other breathing. And everybody looked at me and said, ‘Is this another one of your crazy drills?’ and the first thing I said was, ‘No, this is not a drill. This is for real. We need to huddle up.’ "
At first they thought it was something accidental, like a manhole cover explosion.
"But once we actually found out that this was a man-made event, there’s a certain mental toll that sort of hits a switch in some of the staff. And they say, ‘Why would somebody do this?’ " Osgood said.
But soon there was no time for such thoughts. Terribly injured patients began coming through the emergency room doors of every big hospital in the city — many of them with the kinds of injuries, doctors say, that U.S. troops get in Iraq and Afghanistan.
Photo by Elise Amendola/AP