How did a car's refusal to start save a life?

Cars which don't start, and car accidents, are sometimes perfectly timed.

Arutz Sheva Staff,

Crashed truck on Highway 3
Crashed truck on Highway 3
United Hatzalah

On Thursday afternoon, upon finishing her day of filming instructional videos for new emergency medical technicians at United Hatzalah headquarters in Jerusalem, Revital Curiel couldn’t get her car started.

As it turns out, the issue was with the remote which both unlocks the car doors and starts the engine.

Curiel has been an EMS instructor and volunteer responder for over a decade, and has worked with both the IDF and United Hatzalah. Currently, she serves as United Hatzalah's regional paramedic of the Negev, and works with the organization's chief medical training office in Jerusalem.

Attempting for over 30 minutes of attempting to locate her car's issue, Curiel realized she had two options: tow the car, or order a technician to the site. Both solutions were costly, and neither would allow her to pick her children up on time.

“I was so upset by this situation, that kept getting worse and worse, that I was on the verge of tears, and I am not someone who gets rattled easily,” Curiel said.

Finally, a co-worker suggested she go to the electric store down the street and see if they could help her. A worker behind the desk took a look at her remote and was able to re-wire the device in a few minutes. When Curiel asked how much she owed the store clerk said, “You volunteer with United Hatzalah. Instead of paying us, go save someone’s life.” That is precisely what Curiel proceeded to do.

Driving home, Curiel was driving past Highway 3's Hulda Interchange when she noticed a truck stopped on the side of the highway. Pulling over, she noticed a car in front of the truck and realized she was at the scene of a very recent accident.

The driver of the car in a bad state and rapidly losing consciousness. He had suffered numerous injuries. The truck driver was lightly injured and not in bad shape at all.

“I began treating the driver of the car. It took a few minutes, but I was able to stabilize him because I had my paramedic kit with me in the car. Had it not been for my timely arrival and the fact that I am a paramedic and had the necessary equipment on hand, his situation would have deteriorated rapidly,” she explained. “It was a matter of me being in the right place at the right time.”

The ambulance driver who arrived a short time later confirmed Curiel's suspicions, telling her that if not for her early intervention, the transport would likely have been very different.

“It would seem that I needed the car trouble in order to be there to save this driver’s life,” Curiel reflected. “I guess even when things are bad, and the stresses of life get to you, you always need to remember that it might be for a good reason. Today it certainly was: Because of the car trouble I had, I saved a man’s life.”

Next time she is in Jerusalem, Curiel explained, she will go back to the store and tell the clerk about the life she'd saved after leaving the shop.




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