Brace! Brace! Brace!
In aviation terms, when dealing with an inflight emergency, where applicable, pilots will instruct their passengers to adopt the brace position prior to performing an emergency landing.
We are asking the passenger to prepare themselves…guard their body…for an impending impact. This will limit to some degree further injury or unwanted movement leading to injury thereafter.
Pilots and aircrew of all types train repeatedly for emergency situations, when to expect them and how to deal with them and how to secure the aircraft, occupants & contents…however, only when actually dealing with a real emergency will anyone really know whether the training was successful in preparing the pilot/aircrew to adequately deal with the emergency and the reality of a stressful situation. ‘We plan for the worst & hope for the best!’
Flying for the air ambulance brings its own challenges and ‘our passengers’ are usually those who have very recently been involved in a serious traumatic incident or have suffered a critical medical condition.
If we were to say: “Brace! Brace! Brace!” then usually I am telling the aircrew to adopt the brace position…but the passenger is usually already strapped down & secure…and maybe they could have benefitted from that preparedness prior to their incident.
As we now move into Spring, then emergency crews, ambulance staff, hospital emergency departments etc will start the ‘Brace! Brace! Brace!’ period.
We are expecting the weather to improve…and when it does, so people start to venture out more and get ever more creative in ways to have accidents & hurt themselves. Longer dry periods & longer, lighter days means road users will generally travel more and at the top of the list for increased mobility during this period are motorcyclists.
Of course motorcycle & scooter accidents occur during the winter months, but in the Spring there is a sudden increase in motorcycle traffic on the roads which will mean more motorcycle accidents…it’s just a numbers thing!
Every year, without fail, there is a sharp increase in motorcycle accident statistics in the months of March – May and this generally continues until the autumn period. Some years the numbers are a lot higher and for longer periods and this relates to longer drier periods.
The drier it is, the more likely it is riders will get on their bikes and go for a ride and the greater numbers will inevitably be involved in an accident…be that or not involving another vehicle.
This peak period is one that riders need to be highly aware of and be extra prepared in terms of riding skills and hazard perception but also be ever mindful that all road users will be increasing and not necessarily be used to seeing so many riders on the road…regardless of the rights and wrongs…let’s deal with the facts first and avoid the dangerous situations, modify our riding styles and gradually build our riding proficiency throughout the riding season.
Get ready!…Get prepared and brace yourself, avoid danger and deal with your emergencies…so we don’t have to!