BlogEmployee Articles

Toolbox Talk: First Aid Awareness

By June 2, 2020 No Comments

First Aid Awareness

OSHA requires that there is at least one person that is competently trained in first aid in every workplace. In addition, WISHA requires that all crew leaders and above to have a valid first aid certification. Although this training isn’t mandatory for everyone, it could literally be the difference between life and death for coworkers, as well as friends and family. First aid training is offered by many organizations, including the American Red Cross and the American Heart Association. Garco has a certified in-house trainer.

Once you’re been trained it’s important to keep your certification current (every two years) so that you have the most up-to-date information to be able to best help those in need. Following proper first aid procedures can reduce injuries and help prepare those that are injured to receive prompt medical attention.

Safety talks on first aid are not meant to replace first aid training. They’re meant to bring your attention to the need and benefits of being formally trained and certified. The fact is that many workers have little or no first aid training. Even those that aren’t trained can help during a medical emergency. Knowing what to do to help and how to gather information that’s needed by emergency services can help to reduce the burden on those who are trained.

There are three basic steps that should be taken as soon as you’re faced with an injury or medical emergency:

1.Survey the accident scene- look at the injured person and check the surrounding area in all directions to include upward for any hazards and information that can be used to help the injured person.

  • Can you safely get to the injured person to administer first aid?
  • Is the injured person in a safe location? Yes, don’t move. No, move to a safe location.
  • Can you smell gas or fumes, is there fire or exposed wires, is this a high-traffic location, are there overhead hazards, etc.?

2. Do a primary survey of the injured person. This will help you to identify any injuries that will require emergency medical attention. Is the person bleeding, unconscious, responsive?

3. Call Emergency Medical Services.

  • Perhaps the most important piece of information to have in an emergency is to know whether the community that you work in uses the 911 system or a local phone number to reach EMS (such as some military bases, large complexes such as Boeing, etc.).
  • Emergency numbers and medical services location (maps) should be posted by or on all first aid kits so they can be easily found when needed. When you make the call, you’ll be giving the information that was collected from surveying the scene and the injured person.
    • This should include the following:
      • Specific location of the emergency
      • Telephone number that you’re calling from
      • The caller’s name
      • What has happened; is it a fire, an explosion or a medical emergency
      • The number of injured person(s)
      • Victims’ condition
      • What help is being given on site

DON’T hang up first, wait until the dispatcher hangs up, they may need more information from you.

By knowing and following these three steps, you can help if there is an accident or medical emergency even if you don’t have formal first aid training. By calling the EMS, it will help lessen the load for those trained in first aid  during an emergency. However, the best assistance that you can give is by being a trained first aid provider. If you’re interested in being trained, talk to your supervisor and the Safety Department.

Remember, safety is your best tool!