Every airport large and small should have a disaster plan to involve all rescue and medical services. (Jessen, Reich, Rørmark, Fahey, Bergot)
Communications between participants at a disaster must be of the highest caliber if patients are to receive optimal care. Communications between fixed operational bases should be by dedicated telephone (intercom lines) and radio on an appropriate frequency. Redundancy must be incorporated into the system. Education for personnel must be reinforced by regular drills. (Baker)
Disaster planning must take into account the fact that in many cases there will be survivors even from “hard impact” crashes taking place away from the airport. (Domres, Baker)
Regular disaster drills using actual aircraft and involving all agencies for disaster management, including physicians, must occur. (Fahey, Jessen, Star)
The principles of triage, field stabilization, and rational evacuation through an ambulance dispatch area must be incorporated into all plans. (Baker, Bergot, Fisher, Oyen)
In a major disaster triage is essential in order for medical help to be most effective. (DeSinnger, Oyen, Matthews.) Triage should be carried out by the most experienced person available. Casualties should be categorized into the following groups: 1) those dead or about to die; 2) those who will benefit from immediate resuscitation and treatment; 3) those who will benefit from treatment at any early stage; and 4) those who have trivial or no injuries.