Hydrochloric acid is one of the popular ingredients in the construction of homemade chemical bombs.
The good news (if there is any in this case) is this exposure took place outside with presumably good movment of ambient air. Exposure to most acids results in irritation of mucous membranes and respiratory difficulty at low concentrations. Exposure at higher concentrations (such as when a person cannot self-evacuate) can result in non-cardiogenic pulmonary edema and hypoxia.
|Look for containers as clues to danger|
Points to ponder:
What, if any, clues were there? Containers, odors, unidentified liquids in the vehicle?
Did the victim of the crash present with signs or symptoms that lead you to think something other than what the situation looked like? Could exposure to the acid fumes caused or contributed to the crash?
What PPE should EMS don for such an event? Let me answer...none. EMS typically is not equiped with the PPE needed for a chemical exposure.
Decon...decon...decon. Prior to leaving the scene...with early notification of area hospitals.