US 3066320 A
Abstract available in
Claims available in
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
Dec. 4, 1962 H. H. RUSSQELL 3,066,320
SPLINT STRETCHER Filed July 15, 1960 INVENTOR 63411. b. @USSEZL ATTORNEY Q atet 3,066,320 Patented Dec. 4, 1962 3,966,326 SPLHYT STRETCHER Hall H. Russell, Lake Charles, La., assignor, by mesne This invention relates to a body splint stretcher; and, more particularly, a body splint stretcher which makes it possible to remove an injured person from a difiicultly accessible location while affording the injured person complete protection.
Body splint stretchers which enable an injured person to be comfortably transported from one place to another and which provide means for immobilizing an injured part of the human body are well known in the art. Such devices are commonly elongated basket shaped receptacles comprising a frame made up of longitudinal strips curved at the ends, cross pieces which are curved at the ends, and an oval band which attaches to the ends of each of the longitudinal strips and cross pieces. The frame thus provided is ordinarily covered with a suitable material such as mesh wire and is fitted with straps to hold the patient immobile. In addition, such devices have a suitable longitudinal offset rod extending part of the length of the stretcher which divides the legs of the injured person. Herefore, however, it has not been possible to use such a stretcher in very close confines due to its bulkiness.
Most industrial plants have numerous places in which men work, such as tanks, vessels, vapor piping, air ducts, etc., which are very confining and which have small openings providing the only means of access to these places. In the past, when a person has been injured or otherwise incapacitated in such a place and it is impossible to fit a conventional splint stretcher into the area, it has been necessary to remove the person by carrying him in a manner such that only the arms and legs of the injured person are supported or, at best, by putting him in a blanket sling. Such methods are obviously not satisfactory since it is impossible to maintain proper body alignment and permanent damage to the injured person may result.
It is the principal object of this invention to provide a splint stretcher which may be readily used in a small confined or restricted area. It is a further object of this invention to provide a stretcher which may be made smaller to enable it to be passed through a small opening and which may subsequently be enlarged to make the patient more comfortable. It is yet another object of this invention to provide a splint stretcher which will enable a patient to be transported safely from one place to another while maintaining proper body alignment and immobilizing any possible body fractures. It is still another object of this invention to provide a stretcher which fits the contours of the patients body and which prevents the patient from being bumped or jostled while being transported.
The foregoing objects are accomplished by this invention which, briefly, consists of a body splint stretcher comprising a pair of longitudinally extending side panels and one longitudinally extending center panel. One of the side panels is positoned on each of the opposite sides of the center panel adjacent to the side edges thereof. The side panels are pivotally connected to the center panel by a suitable means so that the side panels may be pivotally rotated about the side edges of the center panel, thus enabling the width of the stretcher to be made greater or lesser depending upon the size of the opening through which the stretcher must be passed. Adjustment means are provided at one end of each side panel which enables the side panel to be secured in the desired position'w-ith respect to the center panel. A convenient adjustment de-- vice comprises an arcuate slotted plate fastened to the end of the side panel, the slot being engaged by a bolt in the end of the center panel. When the bolt in the center panel is loose, the side panel may be moved freely. However, when this bolt is tight, the side panel is held securely in a fixed position. The side panels and center panel, when so assembled, are covered with a suitable material such as wire mesh lining, canvas or sailcloth lining. The stretcher may also be provide-d with straps to hold the patient immobile; a longitudinal raised rod running part of the length of the center panel to act as a leg divider; handles on the end of the stretcher to facilitate handling; and loops on the panels in which to snap safety lines so the stretcher may be raised or lowered in a vertical position.
The preferred embodiment of this invention is illustrated in the accompanying drawings wherein:
FIG. 1 is a perspective view from above of the assembled middle and side panels of a stretcher constructed according to this invention showing the side panels in closed position to provide minimum stretcher width and a fragmentary showing of the wire mesh lining for the panels.
FIG. 2 is a perspective View above of the completed stretcher, the side panels in open position to provide maximum stretcher width.
FIG. 3 is a sectional view on line 3-3 of FIG. 1 showing the hinge which connects a side panel of the stretcher with the center panel.
FIG. 4 is an end elevational view of the assembled middle and side panels showing the adjustment means for selectively securing the side panels in open and closed position.
The drawings are more fully explained hereinafter with particular reference to the various numerical designations, each individual numeral having the same significance in the different figures.
Referring to the drawings in detail, FIG. 1 shows the three main parts of a stretcher constructed according to this invention which comprise one center panel 11 and two side panels 16. The center panel 11 consists of a generally rectangular shaped frame 12, which is curved upwardly at each end thereof. The frame 12 is composed of side rail members 12a-12a and end rail mem: bers 12b12b and may be constructed of any suitable material, though it is preferred to use lightweight metal tubing, such as thin-walled iron, aluminum or magnesium alloy tubing. However, one or more solid metal rods may be used in lieu of metal tubing for added strength. The frame 12 is provided with transversely extending cross bars 13 which are spaced at intervals along the length of frame 12 and fastened to the opposite sides 12a-12a of frame 12. These cross bars may be ofthe same material as frame 12. A leg divider bar 14 extends longitudinally midway between the side panels 12a-12a part of the length of the center panel 11 and is secured in an elevated position above the center panel by the metal straps 15. The metal straps 15 are each formed with two concave portions which extend downwardly from the divider bar 14 to the adjacent side rail 12a of the frame 12 to which the straps 15 are secured.
The side panel members 16 each comprise .a frame 17 composed of an upper longitudinally extending tubular member 17a and a corresponding lower tubular member 17b which are joined at their ends bytubular end mem: bers 17c and 17d. The lower tubular member 17b of each side panel 16 is straight and is positioned next to the adjacent side rail member 12a of the frame 12. The upper tubular member 17a of each side panel 16 is bent so that the ends of the member 17a extend inwardly toward the region above the frame 12. The upper tubular member 17a lies in a vertically disposed plane that is spaced outwardly from the vertically disposed plane which the lower tubular member 171) occupies. The end members 170 of each side panel 16 are sharply bent in a -V -shape' and the tubular members 1701 are outwardly curved so as to maintain the offset relation of the tubular members 17a and 17]) described and shown in PTGURES 1 and 4.
Each side panel 16 is provided with a plurality of spaced ribs 18, which curve outwardly and upwardly away from center panel 11, are situated at intervals along frame 17, the ends being fastened to the upper and lower tubular members 17a and 17b of the frame 17. These may be made of the same materials as used in side panels and the center frame. A band 19, which is secured at both end members 17c and 17d of the frame 17 of each side panel 16, extends the length of side panel 16 and bounds the ribs 13 on the outside, thereby reinforcing the structure. This band is preferably a metal such as iron or steel, A rod 2i), which extends the length of each side panel 16 and is attached to ribs 18 on their inside surface, serves as a means for securing the lining on the stretcher. Each rod 20 is connected at intervals to the upper tubular member 17a of the frame 17 of each side panel 16 by means of supports 21.
Side panel members 16 are connected to center panel 11 by means of a plurality of hinges 22 positioned at spaced intervals along the length of the structure. These hinges, as can be clearly seen in FIG. 3, are U-shaped units, the ends of which are attached to the lower tubular members 17b of each side frame 17 such as by welding or by means of rivets, and the closed portion of the U- shaped hinge surrounds and engages the side rails 12a of the center frame 12. Thus, side panel members 16 each may be pivotally rotated about the side rails 12a of the center frame 12.
Each side panel member 16 may be selectively positioned with relation to the region above the center frame 12 by means of a locking mechanism consisting of an arcuate slotted plate 23 fastened to each end member 170 of each of side frames 17 (see particularly FIG. 4). The bolts 24, located one on each side and secured to the end rail members 12b of the center panel 11 extend through the slotted opening of the plate 23 and wing nuts engaging the threads of the bolts thus making it possible to secure the side panels 16 in the desired position relative to center panel member 11. When wing nuts on the bolts 24-24 are loosened, the side panel members 16.16 may be moved inwardly or outwardly with respect to center panel member 11. However, when wing nuts on the bolts 2424 are tightened, the side panel members 1616 are securely held in a fixed position.
A plurality of rigid or flexible loops 25 are provided on the end rails 12b of center frame 11 and along the upper tubular members 17a of the side panels 16 so that safety lines may be fastened thereto and employed to retainthe injured person in the stretcher. .,A sheet of wire mesh fabric 26 is fastened to the rod 20 on each of side panel member 16 and to the end cross bars 13 of center. panel 11 so as to cover the lower portions of the stretcher.
As shown in FIG. 2, canvas or sailcloth 27 is then similarly fastened on rods 20 and end cross bars 13 to cover the wire mesh fabric. This affords maximum comfort for the patient lying in the stretcher.
Straps 2 8 are mounted across the tops of rods 17 and underneath panel 11 and the lower side of panels 14. Straps. 28 ro g t a o d t ody o the person ying on the stretcher so as to hold the person in an immobile position.
In using the novel body splint stretcher of this invention to pass an injured person through a small opening, the side panels 16 should be adjusted to minimum width to make it as compact as possible. However, as soon as the stretcher has been passed through the small opening, the width of the stretcher should be increased by adjusting side panels 16 outwardly so that the patient will be rendered more comfortable but the body will still be held immobile.
I claim: I
l. A body splint stretcher of adjustable width adapted for use in a small area comprising:
(a) a center panel member having longitudinally extending side rails and transversely extending cross bars spaced at intervals along and connecting said side rails; I
(b) a pair ofside panel members each positioned on opposite sides of said center panel member adjacent the side edges thereof and pivotally connected to said center panel member;
(c) each of said' side panel members comprising a frame composed of longitudinally extending upper and lower rails which are connected at spaced intervals by outwardly curved ribs so that said side panel members may conform to the body contours of a person lying in said stretcher when said side panel members are in inward positions with respect to said center panel member and said stretcher is of minimum width; 7
(d) a pair of extensible engaging means, each of said engaging means interconnecting one of said side panel members to said center panel member;
(e) and locking means for securingsaid extensible engaging means and maintaining said side panel members fixed in any selected position with respect to said center panel member. I p H p 2. A body splint stretcher as defined in claim l wherein the extensible engaging means comprises an arcuate slotted plate fastened to the end of each of said side panel members; said plate being engaged by a bolt in the end of said center panel member; said bolt being adapted to be tightened whereby said plate may be secured.
3. A body splint stretcher as defined in claim 1 wherein said side rails of said center panel curve upwardly at each end thereof, each of said engagingmeans interconnecting one of said side panel members to said center panel member at one of the upwardly curved end portions of said center panel. v p
4. A body splint stretcher as defined in claim 3 wherein said center panel member is provided with a leg divider element which extends longitudinally part of the length of said center panel member midway between said side panel members.
References Cited in the file of this patent UNITED STATES PATENTS 276,123 Woodman et al Apr. 17, 1883' 316,043 Jones Apr. 21, 18-85 804,538 Hoey Nov. 14, 1905 1,557,647 Austin Oct. 20, 1925 2,101,290 Pierson Dec. 7, 1937 2,360,453 Sullivan et a1. ;'Oct. 17, 1944 2,400,426 Liptay May 14, 1946 2,512,931 Glover June 27, 1950 FOREIGN PATENTS 182,701 Germanyn u Mar. 21, 1907