I recommend that every one learn basic first aid
skills and keep a basic first aid kit
in their car for two reasons:
- So you can help others
- So others can help you
Not many people keep a first aid kit in their car, so if you have one and know how to use it you can save lives. Also since most people don't carry a first aid kit, if you get into an accident the supplies are on-hand for others to help you.
I have a first aid kit that I made from an old Army ammunition box. It is sturdy, water proof, fits under the seat of my car and has a handle for easy use. I have only had to use it once in a car accident but I have treated many burns and minor injuries. Accidents are unexpected, and many people panic in such situations.
The one time I had to use my first aid kit, I was driving up one of the canyons when I came to a bunch of stopped traffic. Looking ahead I saw a motorcycle laying on the side of the road and a woman on her back across the center line. I pulled my car to the shoulder and raced past traffic to get up to the accident (there were no emergency personnel on the scene yet). Having been a Boy Scout and child (I have the scars to prove it) I know basic first aid. I grabbed my kit and a blanket and ran over to the accident. The woman had few visible wounds, from what I was told she just fell off the back of the bike at about 20 mph. She was unconscious but starting to come out of it. As she did she began trying to move. I instructed one person to hold her helmet still, as there was the possibility of a spinal injury. I treated her for shock and tried to keep her calm. When the paramedics arrived I told them her condition and assisted in getting an IV in her and moving her to a back board. Then it was on to the stretcher in into the life flight helicopter that had landed in the road.
Ok, so the first aid kit did not do much good for her injuries with the exception of the blanket (treating for shock) but when bystanders saw me running over with my first aid kit (including the big red cross on the side) suddenly hysterical people calmed down, everything was ok now because someone knew what to do. She was not just going to lay in the road we were going to take care of her. The first aid kit is as big a psychological tool as a physical one. Even though there were no open wounds the point was that I was prepared to deal with it if there were.
Please take a basic first aid class and prepare a basic first aid kit for your car and home.