Keeping safe at a road traffic collision?

by Keith -

In this post, we asked our Paramedics, how can you keep safe when dealing with a road traffic collision?

A road traffic collision is potentially a very dangerous scene. We have moving traffic, chemicals, fuels, passive bystanders, patients who are injured, upset and angry. All these things can present a danger to us. My advice is before you even get out of your car or approach the scene just take a second to think, “Is it safe? Am I going to end up on the list of casualties here if I proceed towards this incident?” Sometimes the dangers are hidden, fumes we can’t see. There are explosion risks that we might not immediately anticipate. But if we just take that second to stop and think, “Is it safe?” We can be less of a danger to ourselves and the people around us.

When we have got people turning road traffic collisionup at RTCs, safety is the number one priority. Think about where you are going to park. Think about how we are going to get emergency services to that scene. If you pull up on a blind bend and another car comes around that corner, you have got no way of pre-warning them, so stop prior to the bend, or after the bend where there is plenty of space, where there is a clear view. Think about where you are going to stop. Think about if you are required. Make sure that emergency services are called to back up, because if you have not called them who has? We do not know. The emergency services would rather have two or three calls on an RTC than none at all. But just be careful. We are dealing with chemicals potentially. We are dealing with fire risk, we are dealing with oil, we are seeing slip, trip and fall, glass. There are many, many dangers on an RTC scene, and are you prepared and are you kitted to deal with that sort of situation? So, sometimes it is better to stay back and just make sure the emergency services are on route to you than it is to actually get involved. And when you look at things like motorways, you have got to think about high speed, you have got to think about vision from the drivers heading your direction. There is a lot of things to take into consideration, but we do not want any other casualties. We would rather have one than two or three, so think of safety first.

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