First Aid/frist aid and cpr


What should you (the first aider) do when approaching a scene with multiple victims? and When is the right time to move a victim?
thank you

Hello Heather,

For a long time basic first aid classes have been taught to NOT to move an injured person. Though to get the injured person to a medical facility they need to be moved. If you are taught how to correctly move a patient there shouldn't be a problem moving someone.

My first question is who do you want to move them? Are they in danger of additional injury (example: a driver was in a minor car accident on an icy highway but cars are still driving 65MPH and skidding around the car you and the patient are in... it would be time to move to safety).

My second question is... is could something bad happen if you moved the patient? if they have a broken arm or a bad cut on the leg, splint and bandage the wound and then move the patient. If they have a broken leg you may need the aid of a stretcher of some kind and it may be easier for a rescue team to handle that. If they have the possibility of a spinal injury you may want to wait till proper equipment and trained personnel are on scene. But... from new data on trauma coming from the war in Afghanistan and Iraq, actual spinal injuries are quite rare in most cases and placing a patient in spinal immobilization could actually do more harm than good, so the idea of immobilizing everyone in a car accident is quickly being phased out.

I hope that answered all your questions, Have a good week.


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Marcus LaBarbera


I am available to answer most questions related to: first aid, pre- hospital medicine, EMT and Paramedic questions, medical transport, critical care transport, ICU/CCU care, sedation, and medicine in general.


I have worked as a NYS Paramedic since 1993 for both community based ambulance companies and large commercial agencies. I Have experience as bike team commander, and shift supervisor for a commercial ambulance. As a member of the Disaster team I was deployed to Louisiana for 20 days following hurricane Katrina. I worked along side the county Haz-Mat team as a "Tox-Medic" with advanced training in treating injuries from chemical agents. Besides my experience on the on the ambulance I have worked in a number of hospital based offices including dialysis and a sleep lab.

I started my EMS career as a NYS CFR (Certified First Responder)in 1989, an EMT in 1991, a Paramedic since 1993, and a CCU transport paramedic since 2005. I currently hold certification as a: NYS Paramedic, Critical Care Transport Paramedic, ACLS/CPR/PALS certified. Advanced Haz-Mat Life Support certified (AHLS). In the past I have taught CPR and ACLS to my coworkers and the local community.

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