Leaving the Scene
We are a small, rural, paid on call department. We just had a "discussion" with the Chief about the following scenario: We respond to a car rollover. On arrival, there is no one present, and a search finds no bodies (live or otherwise). Papers and valuables are spread all over the landscape, and the Sheriff or DPS are 45 Min + away. Do you stick around or head back to the station?
What do you other rural guys do?
You are at this point in control of, and responsible for "the scene". Should you leave and another car come through and stike the original car and another accident results, you are liable. It is not necessary for every firefighter and every piece of apparatus to remain, but someone should. The scene should be secured (could be a crime scene) and warning systems (flares) used to ensure no further injury or collision will result.
Thanks, let me just add that most of our rollovers are well off the road due to high speed just before the roll. Secondary impacts with the wreck are not an issue.
Normal procedure is to advise coms real fast of the plate numbers.
They pass that onto the Police.
The Police pay a visit immediately to the owners house, asking to speak to him.
Owner calls police up when he gets home and trys to tell them his car was stolen.
Police say "Duh.." :rolleyes:
It depends who is working when. Some guys would search up and down the road, in the woods, across the highway, in tunnels, on birdges, in other people's cars :) .Some would report nothing found and head back to HQ.
Another example. Downed power lines. Some guys called power & lighting, ETA 2hours, If there is no hazard and minor. (Down/Arching) If it is acually on the ground they would stage and P&L would be put on high emergancy, They usually have to come from counties away. (Dont ask me why).
9-11.."Its wierd, I got free tickets to L.A.,Hawaii and NYC. Wonder who I'm going to give them to..."
Funny you should mention this. Last week, we ran a vehicle fire at a tow yard. We arrived on scene to find a minivan with heavy front end damage on fire at the edge of the parking lot. I figured they had struck something and ended up in the parking lot...only to find out it was a tow in from a MVA earlier that morning. The department (next county over) had responded, arrived and simply assisted EMS with patient care. They never secured the vehicle's electrical system, which shorted out and caused the fire. The tow truck operator was in the yard when he noticed the fire. He hit it with his dry chem, but the flames continued, so he used the push bar to move the flaming wreck out of exposure range of the other vehicles and the storage shed. This was two and a half hours AFTER the accident.
My personal policy is I do not leave the scene until we have secured the electrical system, and any fluid leaks...and then stand-by until some sort of law enforcement arrives if the vehicle poses some sort of traffic hazard.
We would get the plates, make, model, and radio them in to dispatch if they did not match we would radio in the VIN so they could cross referance the vehicle. We would also leave one truck and a crew of 2 guys to secure the scene until the Sheriff or State Police arrived on scene, and do any special request that they had prior to their arrival. One thing to consider is if the vehicle is stolen the perp. could be nearby so watch your truck and your A** you never know any more.
I would stay onscene, set up road flares, etc. Keep
in mind there maybe other calls in the area and you
want to monitor the radio for emergency traffic for
Meanwhile, secure the vehivle- Radiator leaking?
Cut the battery cables, oil, run off, etc.
Think "customer service"- Can er gather up these
peoples belongings on road? Put the stuff in the
car? Keep the environment clean, etc.
We would secure the vehicle and ensure that hazards were mitigated. We would then remain on the scene until police arrived, but we would be available for any calls in our first due or mutual aid areas.