Ekurhuleni Disaster and Emergency Management Services (DEMS) crew commander Phillip Jacobus “PJ” Reid has been appointed as a judge for the 2018 World Rescue Challenge.
Reid is based at Leon Ferreira Fire Station in Boksburg and will travel to Cape Town to judge from October 21 to October 26.
The World Rescue Challenge is an international firefighters’ competition.
Reid will be one of five South Africans who will join 21 other assessors from all over the world.
The World Rescue Challenge is the premier global rescue event and is hosted by different countries each year.
It is hosted by the World Rescue Organisation and this year’s event will be co-hosted in conjunction with the South African Medical Rescue Organisation (SAMRO).
Teams from throughout the world compete in extricating a patient from the wreck of a vehicle at a staged accident scene.
The teams will be assessed in three safety categories, namely incident commanding, technical rescue (the use of tools to extricate a patient) and the medical technique they use.
They will also be assessed on professionalism, speed and care.
The categories also include general approach to the scene, survey of the scene, casualty care and assessment and communication among the team and with the patient and also the assessors.
All these have to be done within a specified time limit.
Reid stressed that although the main aim in an emergency is to extricate the patient from danger, safety for emergency personnel involved is also key.
He said being selected as an assessor is the highlight of his career which spans 26 years.
Reid added that these types of competitions are good for training and ensuring that they have a readily deployable team of emergency personnel.
“My shift is already benefiting from it as we are currently doing training on how to extricate a patient from a motor vehicle accident safely and on time,” Reid said.
He added that mastering communication on the scene is one of the key things in emergency situations.
“Sometimes you get to a vehicle accident scene and find that there is no one trapped, but there is a person still sitting in the wrecked car.
“We constantly train our crew to know how to talk the patient out of such situations,” he said.
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