Ottawa firefighters rescued a person whose vehicle crashed into the woods early Monday morning. The car veered off the road near the intersection of Stagecoach Road and Old Prescott Road into a heavily treed area near Greely, said firefighters.
The vehicle was upside down, on its roof. The driver was able to crawl from the wreck, but could not navigate through the wooded area back to the main road without the assistance of firefighters.
Firefighters responded to the call around 7 a.m. They used chainsaws to clear away trees to create a path that allowed other firefighters to enter the area with a Stokes basket and backboard to stabilize the patient. The victim was removed from the trees by 7:30 a.m.
Firefighters remained on site to secure the scene and the vehicle, including disconnecting car batteries, stopping any fluid leaks and clearing dangerous tree debris.
Police are investigating the cause of the crash.
Ottawa firefighters offered the following tips to anyone involved in a crash where a vehicle has rolled over:
♦ Keep your seatbelt on until firefighters arrive, especially if you happen to be upside down. You don’t want to fall and further injure yourself or someone else who is in the vehicle with you.
♦ Call 911 if you are able to. Tell the dispatcher that you are trapped in your vehicle. Answer their questions as best as you can and follow their instructions.
♦ Remain calm. Monitor your breathing and try to take deep soothing breaths. Remember if you remain calm this will greatly help others in the car stay calm as well.
♦ If your airbags have deployed/inflated there will likely be a bit of powder released in the vehicle. Sometimes people mistake this powder as smoke. This powder is normal and not toxic. It may slightly irritate your eyes initially but tear drops usually help rinse the irritant away.
♦ Wait for instructions from emergency crews. There will be firefighters on scene shortly and one of them will become your “coach” throughout the rescue. Listen to their commands attentively. They will be your guide and help you through the emergency.
♦ Your firefighter guide will also make sure you are safe and protected before extrication tools are used to rescue you from the vehicle. Often they will put a tarp or shield around you to ensure you aren’t injured by broken glass or other debris.
♦Be prepared for loud noises inside the vehicle while the firefighters use their tools. The extrication tools can be very noisy and being inside a vehicle sometimes causes an amplifying effect. Don’t be alarmed. Your firefighter guide will always be checking in with you and keeping the lines of communication open.