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Emergency Scene Safety – Who’s Directing Your Traffic?

March 11, 2013

photo (7)It was just before noon at one of the busiest intersections in town. An impressive accident had just occurred when a silver mini-van t-boned a red truck – tipping it onto its side. Both van and truck were loaded with occupants, so more ambulances would be needed to transport all the non-critical patients.

This wasn’t an incident that called for an administrative officer, but the accident was in alignment with my trip back to the office. So I stopped to observe, but shooting a video of what I was watching – for the responders to later watch – seemed like a good idea too.

Another ambulance was needed for patient transport, but it seemed like there was more than an ample number of emergency personnel on scene. Heck, there was even a number of civilian helpers on scene.

I immediately spied one of the civilians who had pitched in to help. He was directing traffic. Then another jumped in. Then another jumped in. Three civilian traffic directors with – no vests and no identification.

This incident took place years ago. Nobody got hurt and it isn’t my intention to show this video to embarrass anyone. The responders are some of the best I have worked with in my thirty-four year career.

I’m showing the video to remind my current department members, and any others who might watch it, that even the “best responders” can oversee the mundane, but important roles during an emergency.

Who’s directing your emergency traffic?

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