Operations, Rescue & Vehicle Extrication

Assessment of Car Crash Victim Made Easier with Proper Scene Lighting

Issue 11 and Volume 38.

The Dix Hills Fire Department in Suffolk County, Long Island, N.Y., responds to a vehicle crash in February 2012. A sports utility vehicle slammed into a tree, causing the driver’s door to impale the steering column and push into the center console. Heavy-rescue crews were able to reach and correctly assess the patient because of proper scene lighting. They used multiple jaws, cutters and ram tools to remove the four doors and roof of the vehicle to free the patient in a 20-minute rescue operation. About 35 firefighters and rescue personnel were on scene, using three heavy-rescue trucks, two ambulances, a first responder unit and a paramedic unit. The patient sustained traumatic injuries and was airlifted to Stony Brook Hospital by Suffolk Police Medevac.