What To Do If Witnessing a Traffic Accident

Although the number of roads accidents and deaths has been falling in Slovakia, there were four times as many fatal accidents in the first two weeks of the year as in 2013, notes an article in today’s daily SME.

photo: Regional Fire Brigade KR HaZZ Trnava/Sita

The article also gives some advice on what you should do if you witness or come across a traffic accident. The first thing is obviously to call the emergency services on 112, but then there is the issue of first aid, which has certain legal obligations and consequences associated with it.

This is especially true if you are involved in an accident, because failing to provide possible first aid to someone in need, without endangering yourself or them, could even lead to a prison sentence of up to three years according to the Penal Code, Boris Chmel, spokesman for the Emergency Medical Rescue Service headquarters told SME daily.

Chmel also gives the advice that if you witness an accident, you should park a safe distance of around 20m away, put on your hazard lights, and get your compulsory reflective vest on.

What happens next depends on your knowledge, but could make the diffeence between life and death so you are advised to brush up on those first aid skills. Otherwise, you could even find yourself charged for not providing appropriate first aid.


1 Comment

  1. Another crazy, unenforcable law, it’s no wonder successive Governments have never addressed political corruption when they waste parliamentary time on such bizarre nonesense. The first rule of giving first aid to a victim is to not place yourself in danger. That is a decision only the individual can make based on the circumstances and the environment at the time. How someone who wasn’t there, never experienced the situation, can pass an arbitary ruling that may lead to a prison sentence is beyond me. There is also the matter of adequate training – I know of no requirement for drivers or the general public to hold a valid first-aid certificate. Inappropriate treatment, no matter how well intended, can be more life threatening than leaving the victims for professional help.

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