First Aid, Safety & Preparedness

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    Arc Figure 7_22
    If you encounter a person with an electrical burn, you should:
    • Never go near the person until you are sure he or she is not still in contact with the power source.
    • Turn off the power at its source and care for any life-threatening conditions.
    • Call 9-1-1 or the local emergency number. Any person who has suffered an electrical shock needs to be evaluated by a medical professional to determine the extent of injury.
    • Be aware that electrocution can cause cardiac and respiratory emergencies. Therefore, be prepared to perform CPR or use an automated external defibrillator (AED).
    • Care for shock and thermal burns.

    • Look for entry and exit wounds and give the appropriate care.
    • Remember that anyone suffering from electrical shock requires advanced medical care.

    Arc Figure 7_22
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    A , Emergency Medicine, answered
    The following is the first aid treatment for sprains and strains:

    • Seek medical help if unable to bear own weight or if you suspect fracture.
    • If necessary, control bleeding by applying continuous firm pressure above the injured site. Cover with sterile dressing.
    • Stabilize the injured area in position found. Splint if necessary
    • Apply the RICE guidelines: Rest, Ice, Compress, and Elevate. Ice is a cold pack (mixture ice/water) through a barrier directly to area for up to 20 minutes or until uncomfortable. Reusable gel packs do not cool as well.
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    Look carefully for more than one person. You might not spot everyone at first.

    If one person is bleeding or screaming, you might not notice an unconscious person. It also is easy to overlook a small child or an infant.

    In an emergency with more than one injured or ill person, you may need to prioritize care.
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    • When possible, start by talking to the person.
    • Let the person know that help is coming.
    • If noise is a problem or if the person is too far away to hear you, use nonverbal communication.
    • Direct the person what to do, such as grasping a line, ring buoy or other object that floats.
    • Ask the person to move toward you, which may be done by using the back float with slight leg movements or small strokes.
    • Some people can reach safety by themselves with the calm and encouraging assistance of someone calling to them.

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    Call 911. Keep the patient calm, and try to keep them from looking at the injury. Do not attempt to move the athlete or the athlete's arm, and wait for emergency personnel to arrive. (This answer provided for NATA by the California University of Pennsylvania Athletic Training Education Program.)
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    • An effective way to rescue someone beyond your reach is to throw a floating object out to the person with a line attached. These include ring buoys, throw bags or any floating object available, such as a picnic jug, small cooler, buoyant cushion, kickboard or extra life jacket.
    • Once the person grasps the object, pull the person to safety.
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    Do not enter the water unless you are specifically trained to perform in-water rescues. Get help from a trained responder, such as a lifeguard. However, you can help a person in trouble in the water from a safe position by using reaching, throwing or wading assists.
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    • If the water is safe and shallow enough (not over your chest), you can wade in to reach the person.
    • If there is a current or the bottom is soft or unknown, making it dangerous to wade, do not go in the water.
    • Wear a life jacket and take something with you to extend your reach, such as a ring buoy, buoyant cushion, kickboard, life jacket, tree branch, plastic cooler, picnic jug or paddle.
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    • Firmly brace yourself on a pool deck, pier or shoreline, and reach out to the person with any object that will extend your reach, such as a pole, oar, paddle, tree branch, shirt, belt or towel.
    • If no equipment is available, you can perform a reaching assist by lying down and extending your arm or leg for the person to grab.
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    Call 9-1-1 or the local emergency number if you suspect a pelvic injury.