Earthquake Survivor Calls iPhone a Life Saver

Man said he used health app on his iPhone to treat his injury while stuck under rubble

By Todd Wright
|  Thursday, Jun 30, 2011  |  Updated 7:12 AM PDT
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<a title=Dan Wooley survived under the rubble of a hotel in Haiti after the earthquake by consulting a medical iPhone app to treat his wounds. " />

Dan Wooley survived under the rubble of a hotel in Haiti after the earthquake by consulting a medical iPhone app to treat his wounds.

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There's a Rescue App for That

Dan Woolley talks about how he used his iPhone to survive the earthquake in Haiti.
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Usually, when someone says their iPhone is a life saver, they are talking about the phone helping them find a good takeout spot or an emergency bathroom.

When Dan Woolley says it, he really means it. He used a medical app saved on his phone to treat a leg injury after the Hotel Montana in Port-au-Prince collapsed around him.

Woolley, who is from Colorado Springs, is one of the Americans who survived the massive earthquake that hit Haiti last week, and he did it with an iPhone application. Woolley is now recovering at Jackson Memorial Hospital in Miami, but it was his fast actions with the app that may have saved his life.

Woolley used the light from his iPhone to show him his injuries and diagnosed it properly as a broken foot. Then, he used the instructions from the app to treat the excessive bleeding from cuts on his legs and the back of his head.

Woolley used his shirt to tie off the three-inch gash that was opened on his leg and a sock to bandage the back of his head. He said he also looked up ways to stop from going into shock.

"I kind of had some time to do some self-diagnosis down there," Woolley said. "God was with me."

Not bad for a film producer who was in Haiti filming a documentary on efforts to help the nation's poverty-stricken children.

Woolley also used his camera to take pictures of the surrounding rubble to piece together a way out. He eventually took refuge in an elevator shaft until rescue crews found him 65 hours after the earthquake.

"I took pictures all around me, then I would hold up the back of the camera to me and I could see what the picture was of a little," he said. "I was able to find an elevator in one of the pictures and that is where I decided to hobble to be in a more safe location."

On Tuesday, Woolley told The Today Show he knew he was going to die and decided to write a journal on his notepad to his wife and young kids in the event someone found his corpse under the rubble.

"I was in a big accident. Don't be upset at God. He always provides for his children even in hard times," Woolley wrote in the dim light. "I'm still praying that God will get me out but he may not but He will always take care of ya."

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