Jump to content
Sign in to follow this  
IslandGuy

Advice on what to put in a Disaster First Aid Kit

Recommended Posts

Along with EMS I am a volunteer firefighter. I live in a rural community of about 4000 people. If a big earth quake hits, due to lots of bridges we will be cut off from outside help for a few days at least. I have been tasked to build two Disaster First Aid kits. Our department is trained in basic first aid (In BC, Canada the program is called First Responder). We have two halls at each end of our coverage area and want to build a kit for each one. The idea here is to get a Rubber Maid tote to put the supplies in and only bring it out in the event of a major incident. what would you put in this kit? Thanks for your advice.

Brad

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Can't say for sure, really.

The short answer is that your department should be part of a larger regional response system. To that end, you need to figure out what your department will be doing, what the regional system will be doing, and how to better integrate into that system. Going it alone not only isolates you in the system, but guarantees that you will be marginalized when the regional resources arrive. And it's a waste of effort. Find out what the regional disaster system has in mind, and ask how your department can help.

The longer answer is that the contents of the kit are based on level of care, expected injuries and illnesses, population to be served, other disaster resources in the area, distance from other resources, what will be available when (whatever the Canadian equivalent of FEMA) helps, and the time frame that you are expected to manage. WHat you want to prevent is buying a bunch of stuff for your disaster kits that wouldn't be needed, such as antibiotics, special radio systems, or other stuff that would only cost you money. These things may be needed in a disaster, but the question is whether or not it would be needed at your level. The regional system may need you to fill any number of roles, from first response to individual patients, setting up aid stations, distributing medications, securing potable water, accounting for missing persons, or other stuff. Fact is, you don't really know until you talk to them.

There is no reason that you should have to go this alone or come up with it on your own. There are folks at higher levels in your (larger) area who have thought this through, and would be glad to share the overall plan and integrate your department.

'zilla

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I would say go with the basics, but lots of it (especially for FR level care). Lots of dressings/bandages, splints, as many blankets as you can get your hands on, wound care, irrigation solution etc. You specified first aid kit so I am guessing you already have stuff like potable water, food, light etc. If you email the BCAS disaster coordinator in your area they can give you a list of what is in the Victoria area Zulu (MCI) units which would give you a rough idea in terms of quantity.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Dont forget morale boosting items like tea bags and whisky.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Dont forget morale boosting items like tea bags and whisky.

Man...you know, growing up in the Arizona and Nevada deserts I've always had pretty comprehansive survival stuff (from min. 5 gals of water to blankets etc, for traveling) but have never thought about morale items. It seems like they could make a big difference.

Is there a whole philosophy behind these types of items somedic? You know what I mean? (good, cause I'm not sure..like candy for the kids...that kind of thing?)

Pretty cool...I'll have to give this some thought, but if there is already established thinking I'd just as soon not reinvent the wheel...thanks.

(PS. Should the world ever be dependent on me to reinvent the wheel, I suggest you all think about upping your Nike stock....)

Dwayne

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Is there a whole philosophy behind these types of items somedic? You know what I mean? (good, cause I'm not sure..like candy for the kids...that kind of thing?)

The very first lesson taught in any survival school worth a damn is PMA, which is Positive Mental Attitude. If you can find ways to stay positive minded, your chances of survival -- or at least comfort -- increase dramatically. I taught aircrew survival for the Air Force for some years. When assembling items for individual survival kits, we always had long discussions regarding the usefulness of each item. The military has carried condoms in these kits for decades now, and inevitibly, my classes would mull over the possibilities. Primarily, they are useful as water carrying bags, but they are also useful for constructing a slingshot, making a tourniquet, or for placing items into to protect them from water. However, once all that was covered, I always reminded my students that condoms in the survival kit also served one more important purpose. They are moral boosting items. Think about it. If you pull that packet out of your pocket a few times a day, look at it, and contemplate the day you will return safely home to use it for its intended purpose, you will have much to look forward to! That, my friends, is a good way to keep the Positive Mental Attitude!

Of course, as SOMEDIC intended it, morale boosting also works by not just trying to survive, but by surviving in comfort! If you have some basic niceities that help you keep a pleasant routine (tea, cards, music, etc...) then you can stave off dispair for a much longer period of time than you could by only meeting your needs for food, water, shelter, etc...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
This thread is quite old. Please consider starting a new thread rather than reviving this one.

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Sign in to follow this  

×
×
  • Create New...