LOOTING OF CRASHED VEHICLES IS DANGEROUS!
The MVA Fund cautions the public about the dangers of looting vehicles involved in crashes as such risky and irresponsible behavior exposes members of the public to various calamities like the following:
- Infections from blood or other body fluids of those injured in such crashes;
- Fatal injuries from oncoming traffic;
- Injuries from trying to loot items from a wrecked vehicle;
- Risk of inhaling poisonous fumes such as smoke emanating from the crashed vehicle;
- Risk of being fatally injured in an explosion caused by the crashed vehicle; and
- Risk of consuming contaminated food items looted from a crash scene.
Considering the above-listed dangers involved in looting, the Fund urges the public to refrain from looting crashed vehicles and unnecessarily surrounding such crash scenes as this may lead to more injuries. Crowds of people surrounding a crash scene further distort evidence on scene and prevent easy access of Emergency Medical Technicians to the crash scene.
The MVA Fund condemns inappropriate behavior by public on crash sites and calls on everyone to treat all crash scenes with the utmost sensitivity and to respect those who are injured or affected by such crashes.
“Instead of looting vehicles when you arrive at a crash scene, rather take a moment and analyze the scene and make rational safe decisions. There are different protocols for different situations, which must be adhered to if you want to help and stay safe. Firstly, only stop at a crash scene if it is possible to do so, at a safe distance from the crash scene. Ensure that you turn your hazard lights on, and put a warning triangle at a fair distance from the scene, to warn other motorists of the possible danger ahead. This will allow them enough time to slow down. While doing this, ensure that you are safe –you will not help the situation if your safety is compromised, or if you run the risk of injuring yourself,” pleads Surihe Gaomas-Guchu, Chief of Corporate Affairs.
Members of the public are further advised to observe the scene for possible hazards as hazards related to the crash scene could include fuel leaks which could cause a fire or explosion. If possible, switch off the ignition of the car involved in the crash, to further reduce the risk of a fire. Look out for oncoming traffic, dangerous animals or hostile bystanders as well. Next, assess if there are people injured, and if there are, call emergency services for help. Have the following information on hand to ease the reporting process and for appropriate assistance to be provided:
- -The exact location where the crash has occurred;
- -The number of people injured;
- -The number of people entrapped in the vehicles;
- -The number of vehicles involved.
The MVA Fund once again reminds the public to report crashes to the MVA Fund Accident Response Number 081 9682, as doing so can save a life.