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Extrication "Quick Tip" #37 (THE WALKAROUND)

What are you accomplishing during your extrication walk-around?

Many times a walk-around is incorrectly used as an officers mental check note like BSI/Scene safety…However, during the “walk” there are many things that can be quickly completed to speed up the overall operations on scene. Let us look at just a few things that are completed on a good scene size up/walk-around. Realize that this is just the quick officer walk-around and does not include operations that are completed simultaneously by other members such as stabilization, patient care, securing vehicle power, etc. After I drop my hydraulic tool on the tarp, here is an example of my quick “walk”.

  • Evaluate the scene for any obvious hazards (Hazmat, fuel, fire, slip, traffic)
  • Determine number of patients and medical status (Air Transport? Trauma Arrest? Stable?)
  • Assess level of entrapment
  • Extrication blanket placed over patient(s) and glass is taken on the working side via window punch
  • Vehicle pillars exposed to locate airbag cylinders and areas of post strength
  • Seatbelts cut (unless patient inverted)
  • Occupants seat moved horizontally and laid back prior to the battery being secured (electronic controls) by backstep firefighter
  • Underside of vehicle checked for fuel and additional patients
  • Patient status will dictate “Clean vs. dirty rescue” and extrication plan established

This quick walk-around will allow you to evaluate the overall scene so you can implement the best for plan for quick and efficient patient removal.

ISAAC FRAZIER is a Special Operations Lieutenant with St. Johns County Florida’s Heavy Rescue “Squad 4”. First due to the deadliest stretch of roadway in the nation, Frazier teaches from personal street experience providing tried and true tactics. Frazier is the owner of Tactical Advantage Training and creator of the course Tactical Extrication. Frazier travels nationally sharing his passion teaching fire and extrication courses. Frazier is a FDIC instructor, Fire Engineering Contributor, Fire Officer II, FL Paramedic, Special Operations Officer, Florida State Instructor, FLUSAR Tech, Diver, and FL Hazmat Tech.

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