Multiple Witnesses and Passersby Made 911 Calls after I-65 Bus Accident
A school bus accident injured 23 of 46 people who were onboard in Nashville last week, and multiple people who were near the scene called 911 to report the accident and offer aid.
WKRN.com reports that the accident occurred on Interstate 65 when the bus driver lost control while exiting the interstate and entering Briley Parkway.
A witness who called 911 is a nurse who turned back and exited her vehicle to aid the victims. She told the emergency dispatcher that there were students on board and that some appeared to be seriously injured.
The nurse then found the first aid kit on the bus and helped a student who was bleeding. A second passerby also stopped and offered to help the victims. He first called 911, then assisted students by helping them get off the bus.
A third adult made a call shortly after the accident and began talking with the nurse about the conditions of the victims. Emergency responders arrived at the scene shortly after to begin treating students at the scene and transporting them to local hospitals.
Dos and Don’ts for Assisting at Accident Scenes
When you come across an accident scene—especially one that just happened—victims may be severely injured and in need of immediate help. The actions you take during the next few minutes are crucial and can be the difference between life and death for drivers and passengers. However, making the wrong moves can put victims at risk of further complications and injuries.
To be as helpful as possible at an accident scene without potentially putting victims in further danger, always remember these dos and don’ts:
- Call 911 right away
Emergency responders are always the best hope for victims who are seriously injured. Ambulance and fire trucks are equipped with life-saving gear that can help pull trapped victims from their vehicles and stabilize their conditions. By calling 911, you can make sure victims get the help they need right away.
- Talk to victims and offer water and comfort as you wait for emergency responders
If you are uncomfortable or unable to offer direct assistance after accidents, simply being a comforting presence to victims can make a big difference. Talk to victims, give them water, and make sure they know that help is on the way. If victims are bleeding, use a clean towel or other cloth and apply pressure to their wounds to help slow blood loss until paramedics arrive.
- Move victims
Unless a victim is in immediate life-threatening danger from heat, smoke, or fire, leave him or her for paramedics to assist. Attempting to move injured victims—especially when they are unconscious—can put them at risk of suffering serious and even life-threatening head and neck injuries. Many victims must be stabilized by professional medical staff before they can be moved into ambulances or even pulled out of their vehicles.
- Cross traffic to get to the accident scene
If getting to the accident scene requires crossing a busy highway or interstate, don’t do it. Crossing a busy street or freeway can put you at a significant risk of becoming a victim yourself. In addition, you should also avoid standing near accident scenes if traffic is still moving through the area. Emergency responders face serious risks despite turning on flashing lights, but witnesses and passersby have no such protection or methods to make themselves visible to other drivers.
Seeing an accident occur or coming across its immediate aftermath can trigger a heart-racing fight-or-flight response. Many Good Samaritans feel the need to help, and some forms of help can make a big difference in the prognosis and recoveries of victims. But attempting to help without understanding your limitations or even the risks you expose yourself and victims to can make the situation much worse.
Your best course of action is to always call 911 and provide as much information as possible to help emergency responders arrive at the scene as quickly as they can. Paramedics are trained to save lives and can transport victims to local hospitals within minutes, giving them access to further life-saving personnel.
Knowing what to do after an accident if you’re just passing by is important, but it’s even more important to know what to do if you’re involved in an accident. If you were recently injured in an auto crash, we may be able to help you recover compensation for your medical bills and lost wages. Find out how we can assist you by dialing (615) 200-1111 or completing a free online consultation form.