View Poll Results: How to you clean up after an MVA

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  • Sweep it off to the side of the road

    7 63.64%
  • Dispose of all the glass and small parts in the trash

    3 27.27%
  • Leave it on the roadway

    1 9.09%
  1. #1
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    Default Post Accident Cleanup

    Earlier today, while cleaning up the roadway after a motor vehicle accident, a nearby homeowner complained that we were littering by sweeping the broken glass off of the roadway. We gathered all the large pieces of plastic and such up and sent with the wreckers. We have always just swept broken glass and small pieces off the side of the road. Is this normal for most departments, or do you carefully gather it all up to dispose of in the trash?

  2. #2
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    It is what all the departments I am on do. The big pieces go in the car.
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  3. #3
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    We dont clean up at all after an accident. The tow truck guys and/or public works does it.
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  4. #4
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    Same here. Big pieces go in the vehicle, the rest gets left for the wrecker driver to sweep up. If it's a REALLY large scene with an abundance of debris, we'll help with cleanup. GA DOT has response units that also show up to MVC's on the interstates. They help clean up as well as controlling traffic and dragging or pushing vehicles to the side of the road.

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    Quote Originally Posted by FWDbuff View Post
    We dont clean up at all after an accident. The tow truck guys and/or public works does it.
    same with us. At most we'll sweep it off to the side, so the road can open up until tow truck/DPW gets it, But that's only if its in the traffic lane.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by FWDbuff View Post
    We dont clean up at all after an accident. The tow truck guys and/or public works does it.
    Same with us, that's the job for the wrecker service.

    Hell, we rarely stay on scene after the ambulance leaves unless law enforcement needs our assistance with lighting or something like that.
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  7. #7
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    It is the towing company's responsibility for post accident cleanup.
    Incidents on the highways are handled by MASSDOT.
    Last edited by DeputyChiefGonzo; 08-14-2012 at 01:24 PM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by FWDbuff View Post
    We dont clean up at all after an accident. The tow truck guys and/or public works does it.
    Same here tow trucks responsibility

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    While it's the tow truck's responsibility, we've usually got the brooms and shovels out while said operator is still winching the vehicle onto the flatbed (once the cop tells us we can do so). As others have said, the big pieces usually go with the vehicle, little stuff goes on the shoulder (or beyond, if the shoulder is paved). Sometimes, if there's a lot of "little stuff," that gets shoveled into the vehicle, too.

    Back when my department was doing "Adopt-a-Highway" we often found pieces and parts alongside the road. Many times it was the leftovers of a property damage car-deer collision.

    Fire is usually handling traffic control, too, so getting the lanes cleared up quickly helps get us off the scene just that much faster.

    Since we're about 95% rural, we don't usually have to worry about nearby homeowners.
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    If we touch we are responsible for it so we don't touch it. Tow operator is responsible

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    Most of the debris is swept up with the speedy dry we put down and it's all given to the tow truck operator. Very rarely do we sweep it to the side and just leave it there.
    "This thread is being closed as it is off-topic and not related to the fire industry." - Isn't that what the Off Duty forum was for?

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    I cannot vote in the poll because there is not a selection available for what we do.

    We carry absorbent, heavy duty plastic bags, twisty-ties, and "contents" labels on every fire company. We are required to pick-up/absorb all hydrocarbons and anti-freeze, bag it, tag it, label it, and return it to the fire station where it is placed inside of an "EPA-friendly" container. The Water Department picks up the sealed bags and disposes of it.

    Broken glass, car parts, and etc. are the responsibility of the towing & recovery service dispatched to the scene.

    In a life-threatening emergency, i.e. persons trapped inside of vehicle AND fuel leaking everywhere, we can utilize foam (or soap or whatever) in the best interest of safety of both our personnel and the patients but we need to notify the Water Department ASAP of the estimated quantity and type of material that is being introduced into any water drain.
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  13. #13
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    For the most part, cleanup is the responsibility of the towing company. If we get there and have to clear a lane for traffic to pass, we will sweep everything out of the lane, but not into the ditch or onto the side of the road. That seems a little irresponsible. It is just as easy to pile it up and have the driver sweep it up. We will also put down oil dry if there is an active leak that needs to be stopped. Whatever we use gets replaced off of the tow truck. They bill for it, we don't.
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    We just clean up as a courtesy, not because we are required to. We handle the big and little pieces as most do, but neither my rural POC or fulltime dept. have any SOP's on it. Just the obvious things like don't shovel it onto someone's nice lawn....

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    Toss the big stuff and what is easily swept up into the car. If it is in a neighborhood, we'll go the extra distance and try to get most of it up. On the highway, with cars doing 80mph around us, a 70% solution is great... a push into the shoulder works well. I am not getting killed over some absorbant or glass.
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    Like most others, the "big stuff" goes with the wrecker. We however will assist with cleaning up the roadway, if for no other reason than to get the road open back up as safely and quickly as possible. But we try not to have to shovel or sweep any more than we have to, which is why we carry a leaf blower, which works wonders!
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    Quote Originally Posted by BULL321 View Post
    Like most others, the "big stuff" goes with the wrecker. We however will assist with cleaning up the roadway, if for no other reason than to get the road open back up as safely and quickly as possible. But we try not to have to shovel or sweep any more than we have to, which is why we carry a leaf blower, which works wonders!
    Leaf blower. While at Harrisburg fire show, saw 4 or 5 trucks that had leaf blowers on them. Could not figure a reason why nor find anyone that could provide the answer. Are you saying you use the leaf blower to blow "residue" away? Guess I found the reason.
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    Quote Originally Posted by FiremanLyman View Post
    Toss the big stuff and what is easily swept up into the car. If it is in a neighborhood, we'll go the extra distance and try to get most of it up. On the highway, with cars doing 80mph around us, a 70% solution is great... a push into the shoulder works well. I am not getting killed over some absorbant or glass.
    Yep, thats us also.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Bones42 View Post
    Leaf blower. While at Harrisburg fire show, saw 4 or 5 trucks that had leaf blowers on them. Could not figure a reason why nor find anyone that could provide the answer. Are you saying you use the leaf blower to blow "residue" away? Guess I found the reason.
    If by residue you mean oil dry, then yes. Its also good for broken auto glass and very small vehicle parts.

    And before the "Green" people pitch a fit, we do bag the oil dry that is soaked, and let the wrecker service haul it off with the car.
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    Quote Originally Posted by BULL321 View Post
    And before the "Green" people pitch a fit, we do bag the oil dry that is soaked, and let the wrecker service haul it off with the car.
    Green People?
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    No way those guys are way to cool!
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  22. #22
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    Yes..... Or Sometimes...... Or Maybe. We tend to do whatever is needed to handle the problem in a reasonable manner. Yes, we'll push "Small Stuff" off the Travel Lanes, but NOT onto Lawns, etc. Often a scoop or two of sand, dirt, mulch, or whatever is available is thrown on spills, We don't carry Speedy Dry or anything like that. NOTE= If you are a department that uses a Fiberous oil absorbent, READ THE DIRECTIONS ON THE BAG. That stuff is for absorbing Hydrocarbons off of a WET SURFACE only. I mention it here because I've seen a huge number of FDs use the stuff, usually incorrectly. OK back to the Discussion: We help clean up stuff with the Tow Operators for several reasons, including the fact that some of them are VFD Members, some of them are a big help to us when we need it, and if everyone helps, things are done quicker and we can go home. A Neighboring Company ran an Auto Accident a couple of days ago, and there wasn't anything much to do, but they stayed for a bit anyway. as they were about to load up and leave, a car struck the apparatus. IF they had left when they found that they weren't needed, the car that hit the engine would have run through the first crash scene and hit several police officers. Here, ALL of us who run Emergencies on roadways look out for each other......

    Side note to Bones: Leaf Blowers are rapidly becoming the tool of choice for clearing a firebreak in a Hardwood Forest. One leafblower can do the same work as a half dozen guys with brush rakes in line building........ And, because of that, we're seeing more of them on Apparatus now.....
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