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The Development Of Ground And Air Transport

2784 words - 11 pages

A. The development of ground transport

In old days, before the wheel invention (pre-3000 B.C) people normally were carried the sick and wounded on the shoulder between two men or backs of friends or animals(MacDonald & Miller, 1989). Forced transports were used for those with mental disorders in ancient time, however, one of the earliest uses of the wheel for patient transportation was constructed (circa 900 A.D.) by Anglo-Saxon, so they called it the Anglo-Saxon wagon hammock(Bell, 2009). This hammock was placed between two poles raised on a four wheeled platform(MacDonald & Miller, 1989). War wounded were most likely the primary stimuli for the development of ambulance systems. The English word ambulance comes from the French word “l’ambulance” which referred to a military “field hospital” that transported, received, and treated wounded soldiers(MacDonald & Miller, 1989).

In the seventh century during the Muslims conquests, the Muslim armies were reported to have had a mobile dispensary following them to treat wounded soldiers on the battlefield. In particular, one of the youngest Muslim woman at age of seventeen called Amin bint Qais was trained to lead a medical team in one of these early battles(Ingrams, 1983). Moreover, in the tenth century, doctors in Iraq were often assigned to mobile medical teams to treat those patients outside of the hospital, whether Muslim or non–Muslim(Crone, 2005). In the eleventh century, during the Crusades the Kinghts of St John set up different hospitals that played a significant role in accommodation poor and sick pilgrims on their arrival in the Holy Land(Nicholson, 2001).

Later in the eleventh century, the Norman horse litter was an improvement over the Anglo-Saxon wagon hammock, a litter suspended between two horses on two poles, that the patient traded swinging for bouncing (Bell, 2009). In 1487 Ferdinand and Queen Isabella of Spain campaign against the Moors, the Spanish army took an unprecedented interest in the welfare of their troops, and establishing “ambulances” which were special tents for the wounded. However, their role was to pick up wounded soldiers after the end of the battle (MacDonald & Miller, 1989). In the 1790s the French surgeon Dominique- Jaen Larrey, was shocked from the huge number of wounded soldiers who left on the battlefield until they could moved to the field hospitals. Therefore, Larrey developed the ambulance volante (the flying ambulance) that was a lightweight, two wheeled, horse-drawn wagon that stayed on the battlefield. The wounded treated quickly on the battlefield then transported by the ambulance volante to the field hospital (MacDonald & Miller, 1989).

The concept of an organized ambulance service for the war wounded was not clear until the mid-1800s, when the U.S. army improvised using different designed litters, travais, and cacolets carried or drawn by animals or men. In their battles against the American Indians, the army frontiersmen realized that...

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