Film ID:
YFA 4633

MAY DAY CAN BE ANY DAY

1974

Visitor Tabs

Description

This film, made by West Yorkshire Police, captures an emergency service accident simulation that took place on the M.62. The accident, which involves a leaking chemical tanker and a severely injured driver, is documented by the filmmakers as emergency service crews respond by closing off the motor way, cleaning up the chemical spill, and providing the injured with medical attention.

Title - 'Mayday' can be any day.

The film opens with a shot of the M62 motorway, and the voiceover says it is a special day as an accident is being simulated to test the efficiency of the emergency services. The accident is then shown; a tanker has hit a car which has flipped over, and the tanker is leaking fluid over the three lanes. There are then shots of the tanker markings, which indicate that the tankers contents are poisonous. A shot shows a female officer in an emergency call centre as she receives the emergency call from the tanker driver. A close up shows the tanker marking again with the 3X printed on the label. The voiceover states that the "3X' means foam, chemical and breathing apparatus suits must be used in the clean-up operation".

Members of the public then arrive and try to assist the driver in the overturned car. At the emergency service call centre, an officer relates the report to on duty policeman, and shots show a squad car en route. The patrol car arrives, with one officer moving forward to assess the situation, while the other officer goes to cordon of the road - protecting the scene. A shot shows a policeman in his car describing the situation over a radio. The civilians try and stop the spillage from the truck, but are warned off by the driver. Officers then continue to set down cones as an ambulance arrives, with the medics moving to the help the injured.

Back at the emergency call centre, the controller calls a chemist specialist, who reports the chemical number and gets a positive id on the chemical. From the call to the specialist, the voiceover states that emergency crews now know to park up wind of the spill, and an arriving fire engine does so. The fire brigade then hose down the contaminated civilians, and the firemen don breathing apparatuses before moving into the area. A man then puts on a radiation suit and assists as the overturned car is heaved back on its wheels. The police control vehicle - a modified land rover - then arrives on the scene, and shots show the incident controller inside speaking into a radio.

The scene is now a hive of activity; fire crews attempt to recuse the man in the overturned car and chemists from ICI, who wear green overalls, tend to the chemical spill. The surgeon then arrives and the voiceover says that he, if necessary, can request a full surgical team from the nearest hospital. The surgeon then appraises the trapped individuals, and shots show injured inside the car with various simulated wounds. A man is then removed from the car and stretched him into the ambulance. The ambulance then drives off with the less severely injured individuals.

Members of the public are then escorted away from the scene as the surgical teams arrive, and the voiceover states that there is a real possibility of the team performing a major surgery on the motorway. The surgeons remove their equipment, while the injured man is cut from his vehicle by the fire crew. The surgical team then simulate an amputation of a limb from the injured man, before the gravely injured man is whisked away by an ambulance.

A decontamination tent is then erected, where all at exposed individuals will be treated. The fire brigade then spread a special chemical agent over the spillage, while some firemen are hosed off. A breakdown truck then arrives to take away the overturned van. Before it sets off, the wheels of the damaged van are also washed. Shots then show the signs the police have laid out at different distances along the road. The scene is then cleaned up and the voiceover asks, "Are you ready for this?" The final show some real accidents and a shot of the motorway running normally again.

Title - Incident devised by Tom Hibbins.

Title - Director and commentator - Ken Barrell.

Title - Photography - Rex Matthews & Maurice Cooke. Sound - Gerald Hancock.

Title - Produced by the West Yorkshire Metropolitan Police.

Title - The end.