As a follow on to the General Aviation (GA) discussion, it's not just Sirrus aircraft with Ballistic parachutes, they are being retrofitted onto other GA types, including Cessna. Another concern is the introduction of Airbags on to aircraft. Sirrus has many of the airbag equipped units out there, but again, being retrofitted to others. Ther is no placard to warn you, and they are not in the dash/instrument panel. They are contained in the lap belt/shoulder harness. If they look like a regular seat belt, flat no airbag. But if they are "fat" or look heavily padded, there is an airbag to deal with...so no seat belt cutters there. See attached pics for examples from the FAA CAMI in Oklahoma City.
And concerning aircraft training DVD's, you can ask your FAA regional Airports Division to send you the ARFF training DVD's...those are free as well. Just go to FAA.gov and click the AIRPORTS tab and look under safety.
Years back I took some weekend classes though MIFR and U.S. Air Force for the local fire services to give everyone and idea what to deal with any aircraft crash. Many were told don't touch, flag, tape off, do what you can until the State Police, FAA, Military arrive. Report what you had to do, who was involve. I had a vol capt helping a owner of a aircraft at a crash collecting items from the aircraft that hit a house. Only thing that stopped them was the state trooper that told them to drop everything where it was and get away from the aircraft.
I meant to say MFRI instead of MIFR. Concerning aircraft in my area we have two small airports in our response area in less than 10 min from our station. Plus Andrews Air Force Base and airliners over our area in or out of Reagan National Airport. Since 9/11 most of the aircraft out of the two small airports has been restricted because of the distance to Washington DC.
The incident I told about was a aircraft left the airport started to have problems and hit a house in line with runway within a quarter of a mile. The thing is that the airport was there first and the housing boom people thought it would be great to build a street with $200,000.00 homes over a berm in line with the runway.
One incident had a plane going in the other direction of the same airport but crashed in the woods between the airport and a local road. Two survivors got out the plane and went in different directions for help, one toward the road and the other back to the airport. The pilot died when the aircraft caught fire. The problem was no access to the site of the crash except by foot and dragging and carrying equipment there to put out the fire. There have been a number of crashes between the two small airports and a few I know of at or near Andrews.
As for my city ( population fo 200,000) I'm not sure wheather the first units arriving on scene would really know what to do in case of a plane crash - when I describe my city, I can always say "the city has everything - except for a zoo and an airport", and yes, it really is like that: ecept for these two things I can't imagine anything we don't have - name sth and it's very loikely that we have it ^^
Also if there's no airport, besides rescue helocopters landing at the hospitals, there still are some planned helicopter landings (e.g. politicans or the pope) which have to be secured by fire trucks on stand-by. In case of a passenger plane crash it would be an alarm raching out over several counties: In my city we have a paid FD with one big station, 5 volunteer FDs with 11 stations and 3 factory FDs. The next paid full time FD is more than an hour far away (calculating with the speed of cars, not (fire) trucks).
Nearby my city there is an airfield, but that's part of a U.S. Army Garrison.
Some fire departments train plane crashes in a really LARGE scale. Thus there was a plane crash drill conducted at Frankfurt International Airport few years ago. The simulated scene was a crash between two passenger plains, which means 500 injured people. Of course that was a MCI alarm immediately. And as I said: it was a large scale drill: 400 emergency vehicles with all 1500 emergency crew members responded to the crash scene and simulated not only the extrication of the victims, but also the transport to the hospitals which have to be able to take delivery of that amount of patients
Here's a video of all arriving and leaving emergenc vehicles for that MCI drill with 500 victims: