This next step in the protocol is Step 2 – Secure. This step will be taken only after you have considered and enacted Step 1– Assess and the main objective we are looking for when we Secure is the safety of the site. As long as it doesn’t pose a threat to you or bystanders, we want to stop anything from getting worse and/or eliminate any future threats to the scene.
One of the benefits of being a Truck Driver is that you have the largest roadblock at your disposal to create scene safety. Obviously, we need to carefully consider the location and nature of the event that we are responding to, but your truck can be the single biggest ‘Protector’ if positioned carefully and correctly. Plus, when speaking to emergency services, describe your truck as it can help the arriving emergency crews identify the scene from a distance away. Make sure to allow good access for emergency crews when they do arrive.
Make sure to use your hazard lights and any other warning beacons/triangles, etc. that will help create a Secure barrier for the scene.
But Securing the scene goes a further step. Remember how we Assessed for Dangers in Step 1? Bystander safety is second to your own safety in this protocol for 2 reasons;
We need to protect people from themselves if they fail to consider the surroundings. Remember, they might be overcome with adrenaline (as we referred to in Step 1 – Assess). They may inadvertently put themselves in a position that may injure them and,
If they rush in and injure themselves, your workload and that of the Emergency Service personnel just increased.
Securing the scene may also mean that you are further protecting the patient. It may be as simple as protecting them from the weather. If it’s a storm and there are things blowing around, clearing them so the patient won’t be struck by them. Covering them from rain or sunshine. Simple, but Secure. And stay vigilant. Things can change pretty quickly, particularly at crash scenes. Be practical, stay safe and keep things secure.
So what if we can’t secure the scene? Well …… without doubt your own safety is the highest priority. Call the emergency services, give them as much information about the incident and what is making the scene unsafe for you and do what you can, but please, above all, do not risk your own safety!! I say again, do not risk your own safety.