Reviewing the dispatch data, identifying potential issues with access and egress of the location, discussing the call type and other dispatch information with your partner and having an initial plan of action should be done on every emergency response. Although at times the information obtained in the dispatch data may be inaccurate, responders are taught to “paint” a mental picture of the scene and possible patient(s) during the response phase. This includes using previous experiences of known locations encountered in the past or locations with which the responders are familiar to begin to paint that picture.
Oftentimes, crews respond to areas and locations that they have been to in the past, which can both assist and hinder a rescuer.
To read more on scene safety see Deputy Chief Cesar A. Escobar’s article in the 4th/2016 edition of Pro EMS.