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Immediate Operations at Bus Crashes

Immediate Actions at Bus Crashes ...there are quite a few to think about. Establishing command and control of the scene is paramount. Today I'll  focus on some points for the responders working on operations and we'll save the C&C for another post.

So, from an operations perspective, especially for those arriving early in the situation. A few "quick tips" if you will:

Size up - don't get tunnel vision and focus only on the bus. There most likely is another vehicle involved. For more on this, see Mitigation Journal post First in? Think first! and tune into the First Few Moments podcast at

The fatality/injury ratio is proportional to the size of the vehicle that hit the bus (or that the bus hit). Keep this in mind when you arrive.

Think about where kids like to sit. Prepare for entrapment or multiple casualties in the back of the bus.

Expect exits will be unusable. They'll be blocked by bodies or debris. Side exits are not usable if the bus is on its side. If you can use existing exits, I recommend doing so. If not, make the exits bigger and use them. As a last resort; make your own openings.

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