Major Incident Planning and Support (MIP+S) Level 3

100 videos, 6 hours and 37 minutes

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Ambulance control and a major incident

Video 6 of 100
4 min 30 sec
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So we are here in the quarry currently. We are literally in the middle of nowhere. There is not really good access to where we are, and what we are going to do is discuss an incident that has happened in a demonstration of some equipment where there has been a landslide. So it has been a landslide. There have been multiple people injured. There are people from different countries, so language is an issue. There is machinery trapped. There are people trapped. And we are going to talk about what would happen next within the emergency services to see what would happen to call a major incident. So if this has happened, so over here, there has been a demonstration. The quarry face has collapsed. Maybe two or three machines are covered. There are people around those machines been injured. At what point, from the first aider's point of view, making that phone call or the person on the site here, they are going to be in a panic. They are going to just... How are you going to calm that person down to get the information that you really need?

Well, certainly the call techs are trained to get that information and calm the caller down, 'cause we need obviously the important information out and they are trained to listen to keywords, as well. Certainly the numbers of patients involved, the problem nature and where the location are all going into the mix to get an idea of what is going on on-site. Obviously, it is valuable that we get that information as quick as we can and certainly the location. But in times of stress, people get excited and drawn into other things, so we just need to get that information as quickly as we can.

And obviously here mobile phone signal and down there it is probably going to be zero. So maybe this person is not even on-site, not right down there, they are looking at it. So at what point would you then say you have got that call? Maybe they are multiple calls and you now realize this is something very serious, you maybe got 20, 30 people potentially injured. How would that trigger from the ambulance control point of view to get everything here?

Well, certainly from a control room point of view, once we have got that information that will be escalated within the control room to the duty managers and above, and the decision will be made obviously with the number of casualties in the incident and the number of resources required. That will determine whether that goes to a major incident or a major incident standby. It is important to get the number of casualties correct and the location because those are the two vital bits of information that we need from a control room perspective. Once we have got the location, we will send the assets to the location, but we still need to get more information on what is going on, so certainly when the first crew arrives or the first responder arrives, we certainly need a window snapshot of what is going on. We need updates through a methane process to gain information on what is happening.

So what about the other calls you are getting? Because life is not going to stop just cause you have got a major incident here. What about the other calls? Are they going to be downgraded or how would that...

They would still have to be managed, but obviously, we would find assets, whether it is help from other services or we had the resources within service to send to the location.

And would the whole incident be controlled onsite or would it be a control centre or would the control centre be effectively moved onsite?

Well, obviously as the incident progresses, there will be resources sent to manage the scene at the scene. But the information will go back to the control room once we have got an effective incident commander on the ground and all information would pass through him and then to control and then the resources would be sent on his request by her request.

So at what point does it switch from a possible or a standby situation for a major incident to an actual one?

Well, if an ambulance crew arrives on the scene or it is a manager in a car, they can declare a major incident standby or major incident declared depending on what they see. Now, those two can effectually be moved up or moved down, depending on what is going on. Certainly, from a major incident standby, we have resources or there is a predetermined response for each category. We also inform the hospitals, as well, if it is on a stand-by, so in a make-ready situation. Now, if an incident commander arrives on the scene and declares that it does not warrant declaring a major incident, then we will stay at that standby and work at that. If he arrives on the scene, and what is going on and the information at hand that he has got that he declares a major incident then that will not happen, and then there is another predetermined asset to go to that scene, as well.