A productive and muddy day of first aid training and team building with Marple Hall School. The pupils attended as an introduction to first aid and as a build up to being selected for taking part in the Duke of Edinburghs Award. The whole event took place outside. The day started with Dave our full size mannequin who had collapsed with chest pains out in the woods next to our training centre. Luckily our AED (Automated External Defibrillator) was on hand and the pupils took turns in chest compression only CPR and taking direction from the AED (Dave had vomitted and had smashed his teeth when he fell, hence chest compressions only). Next session was treatment of the unconscious casualty. The pupils rapidly picked up the ABC’s and the Safe Airway Position. The last session before lunch covered all the new skills plus treatment of bleeds – our casualty simulation added to the realism.
Thankfully our warm centre is only a minute from the woods! The pupils had learnt so much in a short space of time and were exceptionally well behaved we had the opportunity to let them work on the steep and rugged piece of terrain we use for our Wilderness First Aid Courses. During the morning session the pupils had carried Dave outside on our backboard and then manoevered him back up a slippy slope with some good team work. Because of this I felt confident to show them the correct procedure for moving a live person onto a backboard with head blocks. This was a good build up to the last event of the day.
The pupils were split into two groups with a casualty each. Within 45 minutes they had extracted a badly injured casualty from a Paragliding harness, treated the fractures and immobilised them with neoprene fracture straps, wrapped them in a Blizzard Blanket (Double skinned foil blanket used for hypothermia) and then loaded them onto their teams stretcher. One team had the spider straps, back board and head blocks and the other team used our MIBS MkII stretcher. Considering we had not told them how to use a MIBS stretcher or neoprene splints they did an outstanding job! Part of the excercise was to also use some common sense – hence the lack of explanation.
We had a thoroughly enjoyable day and it was great to see year nines working so well and enthusiastically. Their manners and behaviour were also impeccable. Sandie our Office Manager used to be a teacher and was most impressed by their high standards. Under the wet and muddy conditions we worked in today they are a credit to their school, teachers and parents. We were so impressed we sent them home on the train with certificates of achievement!
Two hours of kit cleaning (I am so glad we have a pressure washer) and we are now ready for tomorrows group.