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File photo: Rachael Kimola - Castanet
File photo: Rachael Kimola - Castanet

Tips for emergency scenes

by Castanet Staff - Story: 44073
Dec 28, 2008 / 1:42 pm

Emergency personnel aren’t always the first people to arrive at the scene of an accident, especially in rural areas.

The Kelowna RCMP is asking all good Samaritans to keep some tips in mind if they are the first on the scene of an accident.

Constable Steve Holmes says if you see a motor vehicle event, such as a collision or vehicle in the ditch, or believe you are one of the first persons to happen upon it, please consider the following:

“Is it possible for you to stop, if safe to do so, and render assistance? If you can’t stop, please slow down so you can see if anyone is around, get the licence plate of the vehicle(s), possible damage to the vehicle(s), possible injuries, direction of travel of the vehicle(s) before it went off the road, or collided,” says Holmes.

He says if you don’t know the exact location, drive until you find a sign or mileage marker that indicates exactly where the vehicle is located and what road/highway you are on.

“If you come across a vehicle in the ditch and no one is in or around it and it looks like it may have been there for while, get the licence number before calling it in. The reason is that, this time of year with all the people going off the road, tow trucks are catching up to all the calls for tows, and sometimes a vehicle may remain in the ditch for days. To call such a vehicle in without giving a licence number, gives police no way of checking to see if there had been a previous call about it.”

Holmes says the use of cell phones affords people the luxury of being able to summon help from almost anywhere.

“Many good Samaritans, upon passing a stranded motorist, will call in to police to get help, but this is where problems can start. Though the public’s help is greatly appreciated and vital in assisting with emergency situations, police are providing these tips in order to reduce the needless expenditure of emergency resources.”

He says by keeping these tips in mind, the public and emergency services can work together more effectively to provide emergency care to those who need it.


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