Transporting the patient – Mechanical means of transport – part 2

The real challenge for the Canadian Army Medical Corps during WW1 was to get the wounded as fast as possible to the medical unit behind the line where he would be able to receive the appropriate medical treatment. Once stabilized, the soldier was then moved to another medical unit further down the line or sent back to the front. To do that different methods of transportation were used.

This is post 2 of two posts on the topic of the way injured soldiers were moved from the battlefield to the appropriate medical station. It will show mechanical means of transport. Post 1 is on human means of transport and can be read by clicking here.

Mechanical means of transport the wounded to the Medical unit

Light railway system

click on the image to enlarge

Light and standard  gauge railway system

This You Tube video show the use of train (US troops). Although it is not Canadian troops it does give you a good idea on how trains were used to transport patients.

Click on the link

Motor ambulance

During WW1 the use of motor vehicule for war was really in its first step. These motor ambulances was such a valuable and rare ressource that they were never sent near the front during the day but only at night. If someone was caught misusing or using those vehicules without permission , they were automatically cour martialed. Warrant Officer Gordon Howard is an example of somone who was reverted to the rank of private after commiting such an infraction. His story can be read by clicking here.

click on the image to enlarge

The horse drawn ambulance

Those ambulances were used to get the wounded from near to front lines to medical units further back the lines when roads conditions permitted their usage. Motor ambulances were never sent close to the front during the day but horse drawn ambulance were.

click on the image to enlarge

When the distance to the next unit down the line of evacuation was too far, they would put the “walking wounded” in buses and send them further down the line.

click on the image to enlarge

Hospital ship were used to take patients to United Kingdom or Canada

click on the image to enlarge

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  • gpcox  On 2012/10/31 at 06:26

    Fantastic post! I have a copy of the book “Ambulance No. 10” , not only signed by the author, but have a note to a friend written in it. These pix of yours are great.

  • Medic  On 2012/10/31 at 20:03

    Thanks for the comment ……….. all these pictures come from Internet. It’s 10 years of accumulating inforamtion that I’ve decided to put on this website


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