Swift response to ‘crash’
BP PETROLEUM in partnership with the Chris Hani District Municipality (CHDM) conducted a mock accident to determine the efficiency and urgency of the security cluster in responding to accidents last Friday.
The exercise was part of BP’s awareness campaign about the transportation of hazardous products.
BP Crisis and Continuity Management manager Bhekizwe Dlodlo said, “There are a lot of products that BP distributes to its customers on a daily basis, but many chemicals we transport are of a hazardous nature. The aim of this exercise is to create an awareness among community members.”
The Chris Hani security cluster which includes the South African Police Service, emergency services and the traffic department – none of which were informed about the “disaster” on the outskirts of Komani in advance – reacted swiftly to a call about a reported “crash” between a BP truck and an Audi A3.
Emergency Medical Services (EMS) paramedics were the first to arrive on the scene, followed by traffic officers who immediately took control of traffic and diverted motorists to other routes. The police and fire and rescue services were also spotted on the scene.
The Spilltech personnel hit the ground running by pouring a foamy substance on the deliberate oil spill.
The jaws of life were used to rescue the trapped mannequin from the Audi.
Dlodlo said he was pleased with the outcome of the exercise.
Similar exercises would be conducted in various municipalities with disaster management departments to ascertain if these have the capability, resources and manpower to respond to an accident involving a vehicle carrying hazardous products.
EMERGENCY SITUATION: Rescue workers free a ‘body’ from a mangled wreck during a mock disaster situation near Komani