The compelling factual series Paramedics is back on Nine in a gripping second season.
At a time when Australians have become acutely aware of the work done by all our emergency services, as a result of our Black Summer of bushfires followed by floods in some regions, this series lets audiences up close and personal as people are in crisis.
There are more than two million emergency calls made each year in Victoria. Cameras track the paramedic teams catching unguarded moments of compassion, dedication, anger, vulnerability and laughter.
In episode 5, Carina and Doddsy battle traffic to save a child. Taz and Amanda have a hair-raising encounter with a dog bite victim. Cullen responds to a devastating road accident. Glenice takes a coastal trek to reach a victim.
MEET THE TEAMS:
Taz and Amanda have developed a fun and supportive friendship between mentor and rookie. Paramedic Taz, 43, arrived in Melbourne from India, where he was a medical professional. He has been with the Ambulance Service for 17 years. Taz maintains his professionalism and sense of humour dealing with racial slurs and educating the public.
Bubbly 36-year-old Amanda will officially graduate as a paramedic this year. After a previous career in hospitality she moved from Sydney to Melbourne in 2009. She has been working on the road for more than two years in what she describes as her perfect job. She describes herself as a bleeding heart and admits she may need to toughen up.
Michelle and Nicola have both been paramedics for 10 years. Michelle "Risky", 35, was born near Warrnambool, Victoria and began her working life as a physio assistant at Austin Hospital. Watching paramedics come and go made her realise paramedicine could be her true calling. She loves that no two days are ever the same and the job has taught her to never take life for granted.
Nicola "Pickle", 33, had a light-bulb moment when her nan was taken to hospital and her mum told her "that's the job for you, darling".
Paramedic Eamon is the middle child of five siblings. His younger brother Emmett, 24, was born with congenital toxoplasmosis and has been in and out of hospital his whole life. Eamon recalls Emmett needing medical help while the family waited anxiously. As soon as the paramedics arrived, they would keep everyone calm. Eamon was in awe and knew paramedicine was what he wanted to do.
Mike, 28, describes himself as a "bit of a dag". He has just celebrated his second year as a paramedic, but was previously an emergency nurse for five years at Frankston Hospital. He's very proud of working for Ambulance Victoria and describes it as a "ripper" organisation with "incredible" people.
Leonard has been a paramedic for five years and thrives under pressure. He also loves his role as a clinical instructor. The 30-year-old previously worked as an undertaker. When he was a student at university, one of his close friends died suddenly. That made him realise how precious life is and cemented his decision to become a paramedic.
His teammate Natalie is a 40-year-old mother of three. The passionate paramedic of 16 years has seen it all. She has a stack of funny stories about her time on the road. Natalie adores her family and admits the paediatric cases she attends hit close to home.
Mobile Intensive Care Ambulance paramedic Carina, 40, was a nurse before 14 years with Ambulance Victoria. She finds paediatric cases easier to deal with than the geriatric cases, as the older patients tug at her heartstrings.
Carina's teammate Doddsy is a 49-year-old veteran who has been with Ambulance Victoria for over 21 years. He rides a Harley-Davidson and looks more bikie than a paramedic, surprising people with his gentle and compassionate nature.
Glenice has been a paramedic for 28 years. When she started in 1991, there had only been 14 women before her. Despite it being a male-dominated health sector, she says "the boys were just beautiful and always made us feel welcome".
MICA Paramedic Al is 54 and has been a paramedic for 30 years. He brings a wealth of knowledge and experience to series 2.
New cast member Cam is known as "Cambo" or "Cambo the Ambo". He has been a MICA paramedic for 10 years and a single responder for about seven. He loves both but says "there's nothing better than being able to work on a truck two up with a mate". Cam loves helping people and also loves teaching and helping graduates.
MICA paramedic Cullen, 47, is also new to Paramedics. He jokes that he often gets called Callen (like the Chris O'Donnell character from NCIS: Los Angeles), Collin, and even Colleen. He has been a paramedic for 18 years.
MICA flight paramedic Matt, 46, worked as a nurse in the Monash Medical Centre. On a UK visit he worked for a hospital trialling a rapid-response vehicle. "There was a doctor and myself that would respond in a souped-up Land Rover to major car accidents," he says. Back in Australia he joined Victoria's Ambulance Service in 1999. Matt has young children and finds paediatric cases the toughest.
Ray has worked as a paramedic for 22 of his 49 years, seven as a MICA flight paramedic. The former industrial chemist also worked for a fledgling helicopter emergency medical service in Qatar. "I'm one of the lucky ones who's doing the job they have wanted to do since they were a kid," he says. "There's no one you'll find in the air wing who doesn't love coming to work."