Country: United Kingdom • Report published: April 16, 2015
Dr. Sophie Elizabeth Hardy
A&E core trainee
Medway Maritime Hospital, Medway nhs trust
Role in incident: Junior Doctor on duty in A&E at time of Major incident
Summary: Sheppey Crossing Bridge Road Traffic Accident
On 5th September 2013, a road traffic accident involving 150 cars and 200 people occurred on the Sheppey Crossing bridge in Kent. It occured at 7:15 am under thick fog where visibility was reduced to 25 yards. Cars continued to impact each other for a further 10 minutes following the first collision and as the fog lifted, it was evident that the pile up involved cars extending across most of the 1270 metre long bridge. There were 69 casualties: 37 were taken to surrounding hospitals, 8 of them with serious injuries but no fatalities. 32 were directed to minor injuries by critical care paramedics on scene.
The crash was one of the worst seen on British roads and it has been hailed as a miracle that there were no deaths and very few serious injuries. Although declared a major incident, there was minimal disruption to the routine emergency and healthcare services. This was in a large part due to the effective triage by paramedic practitioners and critical care paramedics on scene and to appropriate use of ambulances and the patient distribution to various receiving hospitals.
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