Lessons for Life for First Responders

Every step counts for First Responders but one too many can be deadly.

FIRST AT THE SCENE

Firefighters, police and EMS are typically first on the scene in an emergency and face the greatest risk from electrical contacts. Understanding the fundamentals of electrical safety is key. Assume all lines are energized and potentially deadly.  Secure the area. Keep yourself and the public at least 10 meters (30 feet) away from fallen powerlines.

POWERLINES ARE ON A VEHICLE

Do not enter or contact vehicles that may be energized. Instead, instruct victims to drive the vehicle away from the line if they can do so safely. If they cannot, have them STAY IN THE VEHICLE until Burlington Hydro confirms the power has been cut.

IMMINENT DANGER- OCCUPANTS HAVE TO GET OUT!

If victims are in imminent danger from fire or other hazards, stay away, and instruct them to jump clear, landing far enough away from the equipment that they don't touch the equipment and the ground at the same time. Instruct them to land with their feet together and shuffle away, keeping their feet together and on the ground.

USING LADDERS AND HIGH REACH EQUIPMENT

Upon arrival at any accident scene or fire, survey the site for powerlines and be aware, especially if ladders or high reach equipment are needed.  Know where the lines are!  Carry ladders horizontally and always check before extending or moving your ladder.  Just because a ladder is not made of metal, does not mean it is safe to touch a powerline, it will act as the path to ground for electricity and electrocute anyone on it.