Stay calm after crash

2016-12-07 06:01

Knowing what to do when involved in a vehicle accident should be of concern to every road user. ER24 therefore urges people to be prepared as best as they can.

Here are some tips to help, should you be involved in (or come across) a road accident.

  • If you are involved in a collision, stop the vehicle.
  • Do not leave or flee the scene. Get your vehicle to a safe area on the side of the road, if possible, to avoid further incidents.
  • Give your name and address, the name and address of the owner of the vehicle where necessary, as well as the registration number and your driving licence details if required to do so. Report the incident at a police station within 24 hours.
  • While on the scene, try to stay calm. Assess the situation to determine the best action to take.

Make use of hazard lights and an emergency triangle to alert passing motorists. There are instances where secondary collisions occur, so you should ensure scene safety. Assess traffic flow and determine if it poses a danger to anyone, including those involved in the collision.

  • Ascertain the nature or extent of the accident. Is everyone who was travelling in your vehicle accounted for (people could have been ejected from the vehicle, for example)? Are people who were travelling in the vehicle you were in injured? Are people in other vehicles involved in the collision injured? Are people trapped in vehicles? Are injured people lying in the road?
  • Call emergency services immediately or instruct someone to do so. Always have important contact details, such as the numbers of emergency services and the SAPS, stored on your phone. ER24 has a dedicated 24/7 emergency contact centre that enables you to request an emergency vehicle telephonically.

Call 084 124 in case of an emergency. Remember, the information you are requested to provide is often the the starting point for saving a life.

  • Where first aid is needed, start immediately if you are able to do so. Always carry a first-aid kit in your vehicle. If a patient you are with is unconscious, open their mouth to check if there is something causing an obstruction. Check if the person is breathing. If the patient is breathing, leave them in the position you found them in and monitor them. If the patient is not breathing and you have been trained to do so, initiate CPR.

) Never move an injured person unless for their own safety (for example, if the vehicle is on fire).

  • Remember that while it is important to assist a patient, you should also ensure your safety. Do not attempt anything that may jeopardise your own safety. You are of no use to anyone if you are injured while attempting to help others. Also remember, never touch someone’s blood or try to assist them without proper protection, such as gloves.

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