India is the fourth largest automotive market in the world, and while that's certainly a big feat, it is also accompanied by the undeniable fact that we have a high number of road accidents. According to the Government of India, every year, more than 1.50 lakhs people lose their lives in our country in road accidents. While in most cases it's the fatality of the incident itself that causes loss of lives, many times the reasons are as trivial as First Aid not given on time or mishandling of the situation. So, as India observes its first National Road Safety Month (January 18, 2021, to February 17, 2021) we list down some important things you should know in case you witness an accident. This is irrespective of whether you are driving a car/bike or simply a pedestrian walking on the road.
Safety Comes First!
If you are in a car or riding a two-wheeler, and an accident occurs around you it is important that you pull over to a safe area. Stop at a safe distance from the accident spot in order to leave room for emergency vehicles, and ensure that you're not in any danger. Turn on the hazard light on your car so other drivers on the road can are also alerted about the situation.
Always Call For Help
In an emergency, every second count, so it is best to call for help as soon as possible. It's always advisable to know the phone numbers of local emergency services, and if you don't have them, you can call 100 for police, and 102/108 for an ambulance. Make sure that you describe the situation properly and give them the correct location so the right help could arrive in time. Also, make sure to call only once you have parked safely.
Help The Right Way
Given the situation, adrenaline could make you want to help before assistance arrives, but it's important to help only if you know how to. If you want to assess the situation, make sure that it's safe to approach the vehicle involved in an accident before doing so. If it is a two-wheeler rider who has been in an accident DO NOT, I repeat DO NOT remove the helmet yourself. You could make the injury even worse, only let the emergency personnel do it. In case, the driver and/or occupants in the car are conscious, speak to them keep them awake and help them reach out to their relatives or friends if needed. You can also help by setting up the reflective safety triangles to block off the accident area.
Stay Until Help Arrives
It is both wise and humane to stick around the accident area until help arrives. You can help by giving the police/authorities an account of the situation and what you witnessed. In case the victim is conscious they are bound to be scared you can act as a source of comfort until someone else arrives. In case the accident was caused due to someone driving inappropriately or recklessly, the victim will benefit from your help as a witness, and you could also help defuse a possible argument between the drivers, or prevent someone from taking advantage of the other party.
It always helps when you are prepared. If you driving a car make sure you keep emergency supplies like a fire extinguisher, First Aid Kit, a glass breaker, etc. You never know what will come handy. Also, if you get a chance to learn how to give first aid and CPR (Cardiopulmonary resuscitation) you should do that, you might just save someone's life.