First aid for roadside accidents -

Dealing with Accidents

When faced with an accident, you should first assess whether the scene of the accident is safe, then assess any injuries; only after that decide what action to take. Whatever the situation, it is important that you are calm and confident, particularly when you are with the casualties, as this will reassure them.

When you are sure that the area is safe, try to locate all the casualties; some may have been thrown some distance or have wandered away. If there is more than one casualty, decide who is the most seriously injured and treat him first. Try to keep bystanders back until the emergency services say it is safe to go near.


  • Listen:
    The casualty may be able to tell you what happened and how he/she is feeling
  • Safety:
    Make the accident scene as safe as possible. At a road accident, put warning triangles 200 m in each direction. Park your car, with hazard lights on so that it blocks off traffic. Look out for gas, smoke, chemicals or other unsafe structures.
  • Danger:
    Do not put yourself at risk at any point. Only move a casualty if he is exposed to further danger. If you are unsure wait for professional help.
  • Signs and Symptoms:
    Look and feel for signs and symptoms of an injury for example swelling, bruising, or deformed limb etc.
  • Make sure that you are not putting yourself at risk by approaching an incident or casualty.


  • Check the Surrounding area: a casualty may have been thrown clear of a car or have walked away in a state of shock.
  • Look out for hazard warning signs on a vehicle. If you don’t know what a sign means keep your distance, particularly if there is a spillage on the road.
  • Do not try to move a casualty who is trapped in a vehicle unless he is in immediate danger. Turn off the ignition and call an ambulance immediately.
  • Do not smoke or allow any bystanders to smoke near a crashed vehicle.


  • Do not move the casualty unless he is in immediate danger.
  • Do not remove helmets; leave it to the emergency services. However, if you need to give artificial ventilation undo or cut the straps and, with a helper keeping the head and neck supported and aligned with the spine, gently ease the helmet over the top of the head.
  • Keep the casualty warm and as comfortable as possible.

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