Hampshire Fire and Rescue visited Peter Symonds College to perform a simulated car crash cut-out in front of an audience of college students.The exercise aimed to demonstrate what is involved in extracting someone trapped in a crashed vehicle and formed part of a college campaign highlighting the dangers of texting behind the wheel.
Leading the exercise was Watch Manager Sean Gray, who along with his crew from Green Watch, Winchester, demonstrated the full process of cutting free car crash victims. Before commencing the simulation, Sean explained to the students the circumstances of the incident. A driver had knocked over and killed a pedestrian whilst texting behind the wheel. The collision had caused injuries and fatalities amongst the driver and passengers and it was now necessary for the fire crew to free the passengers as safely as possible.
Students James Field, Oscar Cristofoli, Kyle Monkcom and Romi Haywood-Mann bravely volunteered to play the passengers and sit in the car whilst the Fire Crew cut them free using heavy hydraulic cutting equipment. For their own protection they were asked to wear googles and a dusk mask whilst the demonstration took place.
The crew worked for 30 minutes helping release and treat the mock casualties using typical tools and techniques utilised in real life car crash incidents. Bob House, talked through the exercise as the fire crew worked and explained that in usual accident scenarios they would aim to cut passengers free within 20 minutes.
As well as encouraging students to adopt a responsible attitude towards driving, the exercise also provided valuable practice for the fire crew who can attend up to 10 of these incidents in a month.
Watch Manager, Sean commented; "Our attendance today at Peter Symonds College was to promote young drivers road safety. We did this by a practical demonstration of extricating four volunteer students from a small vehicle. I hope this exercise highlighted the potential devastating effect a road crash can have on the occupants, members of their family and not forgetting the trauma crews will also face.Road Crashes are the biggest killer of teenagers worldwide, One in five new drivers are involved in a crash in their first year of driving.There are many causes of these incidents in particular drink, drugs, distraction, over-crowding and vehicle road-worthiness.Please don't be another statistic - drive safely!"
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