Mock crash scenario helps health services prepare for a crisis situation

PATIENT ASSESSMENT: Wagga Base Hospital's Mitch Woods and Stephen Wood assess a "patient" during the mock disaster training exercise.
PATIENT ASSESSMENT: Wagga Base Hospital's Mitch Woods and Stephen Wood assess a "patient" during the mock disaster training exercise.

It is the stuff of nightmares: Two well-loaded buses have collided on a rural road and one has burst into flames.

Dealing with a crash of that scale requires meticulous advance planning, so Wagga Base Hospital staff and emergency services personnel on Wednesday staged a mock scenario to make sure they are prepared for exactly that kind of crisis.

While the scenario was missing actual people, everything else was carefully planned and tracked from accident scene to hospital treatment for the 90 bus passengers.

Paramedics were given information on the “virtual” crash victims and made on-scene decisions accordingly.

Denise Garner, the disaster manager for the Murrumbidgee Local Health District, said the staff were aware the exercise was being held, but did not have advance knowledge of exactly what emergency they would be facing.

Ms Garner said an emergency response scenario like this was held, on average, at least annually.

CRASH SCENARIO: Paramedics Krissy Jeffrey and Cory McMillan are "on site" at the accident scene and assessing a patient.

CRASH SCENARIO: Paramedics Krissy Jeffrey and Cory McMillan are "on site" at the accident scene and assessing a patient.