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Encountering an MVA.

Discussion in 'Off-Topic Discussion' started by squad314, Sep 16, 2009.

  1. Sep 16, 2009 at 9:05 AM
    #1
    squad314

    squad314 [OP] Thinks he's Steve McQueen

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    I am in no way encouraging or suggesting that anyone must or should do the following.My intention is for us to discuss the strategies and dangers involved in assisting people who have been involved in Motor Vehicle Accidents and you find yourself making the descision to help.Various states have different laws pertaining to these situations and you should familiarize yourself with yours.


    I read this and thought I would share it and some personal perspectives...

    "If you were to come across a road accident during your day, would you know how to help? Many of us wouldn't know what to do at the scene of an accident, and would be scared to get involved in case we made the situation worse. However, you don't need to have a qualification in First Aid to be useful in these kind of circumstances.


    So Should I Help? Won't I Make Things Worse?

    It is true that if you wade in there all guns blazing then you may well make things worse for any injured parties. But with a calm and measured approach and a good idea of basic first aid, you may well be able to save someone's life, or at least keep them alive until the ambulance turns up.



    First Things First

    What you need to do first is take a good look at the situation and work out what's going on. There could be several dangerous hazards involved at the scene of a traffic accident and these can include lots of broken glass, fluid leaking from the car and also the possibility of traffic travelling in the opposite direction i.e. towards you and the injured parties.


    So first of all, make sure you are safe. The last thing you want to do is add yourself to the list of casualties.

    If you're driving when you see the accident, park up your car safely - don't use your car as a roadblock - and turn off your engine before getting out of the car. If you were the first on the scene you should call the emergency services, and if others were there before you, check that this has been done.

    If you are a smoker, also make sure that you are not holding a lit cigarette, and if you are, extinguish it inside the car as there could be leaking petrol or other flammable materials around the site of the accident. If you need to flag down cars heading towards you, or need to slow them down to alert them to the incident, then signal to them from the pavement and get their attention that way.



    The Basics

    Check the victims for injuries. DO NOT move them. You can approach them, but it's best to do so by kneeling down first, leaning down from standing towards an injured and disoriented person can send them into a state of panic.


    Speak to the injured parties. Say 'Hello' and tell them your name. If there is no visible response, tap them lightly and see if they respond to that.




    What do I do if They Aren't Breathing?

    If they are not breathing at all or are breathing in an unusual way, you will need to start CPR or Cardio Pulmonary Resuscitation. if you haven't been on a first aid training course then you SHOULD NOT do this. Ask if anyone can give CPR and if they can, stay nearby to assist them.



    Look for Bleeds

    Look for any bleeding injuries. Bleeding is a major cause of shock so you should stem the flow wherever possible. Grab some clean cloth and press gently on the wound. If the person is conscious, then you should ask them to hold the cloth against their injury, this helps them to focus and can help someone who is in shock calm down. If a person is in their car and you can treat them for injuries in there, then do so. Don't move them unless you have to as there may be neck or back injuries that you can't see.



    Shock

    Shock can be a real problem after any accident. There is a little saying to remember 'If the face is pale, raise the tail'. This means that if someone is very pale then they have probably gone into shock. To help them, you should loosen tight clothing and put a blanket or coats over them to keep them warm then raise their legs up (even kneeling down and just resting their feet on your knees will help).



    Emergency Services

    Hopefully the emergency services will have been called before you started to check out the victim(s). It's always best if someone else can do this rather than the person carrying out first aid, as the emergency services will want to keep the caller on the phone to advise and take directions. When calling, you need to provide the following information:



    -Where the accident took place
    -What happened
    -How many people are injured
    -If there are any people not breathing
    -If there are bleeds
    -Any other information they ask for.

    Most of all remember that by keeping a clear head and staying calm you really can be the difference between life and death for someone who has been injured in a road accident. "




    Some other things I'd like to add are these:

    1.Airbags are packed in a powdery substance and when they deploy,there is often dust lingering in the passenger cabin.Don't confuse this with smoke and the vehicle being on fire.Airbags also often leave abrasions on the inside of people's forearms and faces.Sometimes the bags will lead to bloody or broken noses and mouth injuries.In all likelyhood,the winshield will be broken by the passenger bag.Another consideration is that undeplyed bags are a very risky situation.Even with the car shut off,and the battery disconnected,many bags have a capacitor and will remain live sometimes for over an hour.Try to avoid putting yourself between an undeployed bag and a victim.

    2.If you are safely able to do so,put the vehicle in park,set the brake and shut off the ignition.I have personally responded to countless accidents and found the cars running and still in drive.

    3.Try to avoid asking a victim questions with Yes Or No answers....Our first reaction to these questions is to either shake or nod our heads.In the event of an MVA,keeping someone still,particularily the neck is paramount.

    4.Often,after witnessing and helping at a scene,after the chaos ends,samaritans end up getting back in their own cars all by themselves.Witnessing trauma and carnage is difficult for many people and you should not suffer alone.If you find yourself struggling with what you have been through....seek help.Talk to your spouse,friends or co-workers and you need to,call a professional councellor specializing in PTSD.

    Above all else,do NOT put yourself in jeopardy,and only do what you can!

    Please feel free to add your thoughts and experiences here......Be safe everybody.





     
  2. Sep 16, 2009 at 9:10 AM
    #2
    nad

    nad mmmm tacos!

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    good info to know
     
  3. Sep 16, 2009 at 9:11 AM
    #3
    squad314

    squad314 [OP] Thinks he's Steve McQueen

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    I also thought I would add a couple of pics of the basics I carry in my truck for emergencies.....

    1.Standard class B and C automotive fire extinguisher.

    2.Blanket (thanks Saint John Toyota!):D

    3.First aid kit with various dressings,compresses,mouth to mask,gloves etc.

    4.Stanley Fubar.....One million and one uses.:D


    [​IMG]


    [​IMG]
     
  4. Sep 16, 2009 at 9:15 AM
    #4
    petersharp

    petersharp Well-Known Member

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    Do you need to ask?! It's up there ^
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    I've been looking for an excuse to buy one of those, I think you just gave me one!
     
  5. Sep 16, 2009 at 9:42 AM
    #5
    SaturnXL

    SaturnXL Professional Paperweight

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    I put together a similar toolkit back when I had Vehicle Rescue Training (Technician level) at the fire academy. Depending on how bad the accident may be and what you feel comfortable doing, the only things I would consider adding...

    Wheel chocks... if a car is unstable and you're trying to help someone out, you may wanna stabilize a wheel or two to keep it from rolling around. Thicker, triangle-shaped pieces of spare wood usually work well.

    Window Punch... they're cheap... and make breaking glass a whole lot easier if needs be.

    Work Gloves - Something thick and leather at the least. You can always put the rubber gloves on underneath, but just in case the accident is nasty, rubber first-aid gloves aren't going to do much against glass.

    Then again, I also carry one of these in the toolbox. Paratech Hooligan Bar w/Metal Cutting Claw. It's great for demolition projects.

    Don't do anything you don't feel comfortable doing. Don't rush. Use common sense and play safe.
     
  6. Sep 16, 2009 at 9:45 AM
    #6
    DellGSG5

    DellGSG5 Well-Known Member

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    Good Info thank you.
     
  7. Sep 16, 2009 at 9:51 AM
    #7
    thestrangebrew

    thestrangebrew AlphaPlanner

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    This is all great info and will help anyone involved in or who has witnessed an accident. The only thing that I would emphasize, which the OP originally posted, would be that your own personal safety is paramount and should be first and foremost.

    Take a good look at the environment, smells, direction of the wind is important especially if there's a rig involved, fluids on the ground, downed powerlines etc. This is all important information you need to assess if you're first on scene. If you don't feel comfortable or have a bad feeling, look for these things and that will help make your decision to render aid.

    Great post though.

    +1
     
  8. Sep 16, 2009 at 10:08 AM
    #8
    luk8272

    luk8272 Poodoo

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    excellent post
     
  9. Sep 16, 2009 at 12:30 PM
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    nd

    nd Radical Town. It's a hell of a place!

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    The most important thing to remember is a large knife. because you only have precious precious minutes to harvest the organs and get them on ice
    - information provided by Dwight Schrute
     
  10. Sep 16, 2009 at 12:35 PM
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    ImpulseRed008

    ImpulseRed008 Gone But Not Forgotten

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    Only you would say something like that....:eek:
     
  11. Sep 16, 2009 at 1:18 PM
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    nd

    nd Radical Town. It's a hell of a place!

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    I wish i could take credit, but its from one of the funniest "office" scenes i have ever seen. if you dont know what i'm talking about then you might as well be dead
     
  12. Sep 16, 2009 at 1:31 PM
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    Krazie Sj

    Krazie Sj Resident Jackass

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    Don't block the way for Emergency Vehicles and crews.

    BTW, it's MVC not MVA. Accident implies an omission of responsibility.
     
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