Government of Puducherry
Traffic Police

 

HELPING ROAD ACCIDENT VICTIMS

 ACCIDENT VICTIM LIFE CAN BE SAVED BY TIMELY MEDICAL AID

 

THE “GOLDEN HOUR”

 

The first hour after the trauma is called ‘golden hour’. Instant and proper first aid given to road accident victims during this hour increases the chance of survival manifold and reduces the severity of injuries. Many deaths and disabilities due to impact of injuries can be prevented with timely First Aid.

 

It is an accepted strategy of trauma care that if basic life support, first aid and replacement of fluids leading to initial stabilization can be arranged with in first hour of the injury called ‘Golden Hour’, lives of many accident victims can be saved. Necessary activities to achieve are initial stabilization by trained manpower, rapid transportation and medical facilities to treat such cases of trauma, all within a defined period of time. 

 

It is not always possible that proper medical care reaches the victim within an hour, In that case the passerby, onlookers and other people (first responders) involved can provide the first aid to serious victims. However, improper handling of victims can worsen the situation. Though providing proper first aid to an accident victim is not so complicated, one should be aware of the procedures and precautions.

 

National Highway accident Relief Service Scheme (NHARSS)

Ministry of Road Transport and Highways has come up with a scheme entails providing cranes and ambulances to state /UTs/NGOs for relief and rescue measures in the aftermath of accidents by way of evacuating road accident victims to nearest medical aid center and for clearing the accident site.

Further Ministry of Road Transport & Highways would provide advanced life support ambulances to identified hospitals to be upgraded under the Ministry of Health and Family Welfares scheme ‘establishment of an integrated network of Trauma Centers along the Golden Quadrilateral.

One of the misconceptions about road accidents death is that most of them happen due to sever injury and loss of blood. But reality is that most common cause of death in road accident is due to loss of oxygen supply. Most of the times it happens because airway gets blocked due to great impact and shock to body. Normally it takes less than four minutes for a blocked airway to cause death.

Priorities of treating an accident victim

  1. Asphyxia (loss of oxygen)

  2. Cardiac Arrest

  3. Severe Hemorrhage (Bleeding)

  4. Other Injuries / Illness

 

Immediate requirement

Critical four minutes – One of the most common causes of a road accident deaths is due to loss of oxygen supply. This is mostly caused be a blocked airway.

 

Remember:

  1. Make the site safe

  2. Look for the injured

  3. Assist them

  4. Call help and look for the unconscious

Follow the rule of ABC

        A  -  Airway          – Clear the airway i.e breathing track

        B  -   Breathing   - Help restore it by mouth to mouth resuscitation

        C  -   Circulation   – Stop any bleeding

Clearing Airway

  1. Put the victim on ground very gently and cautiously without vigorous handling to prevent further injury.

  2. Turn the victim to one side

  3. Loosen clothing at neck, chest and waist.

  4. Tilt the head back, point the face slightly down so the tongue can fall forward allowing blood and vomit to drain out.

  5. Remove dirt, blood, vomit or loose teeth from mouth.

  6. Restoring breath- mouth to mouth resuscitation. If the victim is still not breathing, give him artificial breathing.

  7. Turn the victim onto the back and start mouth to mouth resuscitation immediately.

  8. Tilt head back, support jaw, keep your fingers clear of throat;

  9. With good mouth to mouth seal and your cheek sealing the victim’s nose, blow into the mouth until the chest rises;

  10. Lift your mouth, turn your head to see chest fall and listen and feel for air escaping from nose and mouth.

  11. If chest does not rise, check;

  12. For blocked airway

  13. Mouth to mouth seal

  14. Continue mouth- to – mouth resuscitation until breathing is restored. Blow every four seconds with adults and every three seconds with children.

 

Circulation – Stop any bleeding

  1. Uncover bleeding wound. Stop bleeding by direct pressure on the wound with thick pad of bandage or cloth.

  2. Bleeding limbs should be elevated to prevent bleeding.

  3. Do not remove foreign objects from bleeding wound.

  4. Apply pads and bandage them around the wound. Do the same if broken bones are visible.

Supreme Court Ruling

           “Every injured citizen brought for medical treatment should instantaneously be given medical aid to preserve life and thereafter the procedural criminal law should be allowed to operate in order to avoid negligent death. There no legal impediment for a medical professional when he is called upon or requested to attend to an injured person needing his medical assistance immediately. The effort to save the person should be the top priority not only of the medical professional but even of the police or any other citizen who happens to be connected with that matte ror who happens to notice such an incident or a situation”.

 

            “There are no provisions in the Indian Penal code, Criminal Procedure Code, Motor Vehicles Act, which prevents doctors from promptly attending to serious injured persons and accident cases before arrival of the police and their taking into cognizance of such cases, preparation of FIR and other formalities by police”.

 

             Supreme court Judgment: In the case of Pt. Parmanand Katara Vs Union of India in Criminal Writ Petition No.270 of 1988, d/-28.8.1989 ( AIR 1989 Supreme Court 2039)