In My Opinion - Emergency Priorities

Submitted: Monday, Jan 26, 2015 at 13:10
ThreadID: 110879 Views:2442 Replies:6 FollowUps:8
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In my opinion in the event of a single-vehicle accident, terrain accident (a fall, snakebite, etc) and persons emergency (acute illness or accident) there are a number of priorities in order:-
1. You / First Aid
2. Family / First Aid
3. Comms
4. Water
5. Food
6. Vehicle/Trailer/Gear

As harsh as it may be, if You are the Organiser, Coordinator, Mentor and Driver then your well-being and cognitive capacity comes before anything else - even to the point of abandoning a family member. Very, very sad but true - better to lose 1 family member than to lose the whole family because You are incapacitated.

Then of course Family well-being needs to be assessed and provided for with your [mandatory and professionally set up] First Aid kit.

On assessment, if necessary set off SOS on your PLB or SPOT - both of which should be stored in your pockets and/or easily accessed.

Rescue your Water and then your Food - forget about camping bags and creature comforts - they won't keep you alive without Water and Food.

Then turn to the question of salvaging your Vehicle, Trailer and Gear - in that order. For example - better to let your Vehicle sink whilst you are recovering your Water and Food than have the Vehicle sink with your Water and Food whilst You are trying to rescue it from sinking. Salvaging your vehicle first might give you a means of transport to safety - your Trailer and Gear can be salvaged later.

Some might say this is all commonsense. Others might say I am wrong. Even more others might have suggestions. What do members think ???
NeilM_BoabOZ
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Reply By: Robin Miller - Monday, Jan 26, 2015 at 14:30

Monday, Jan 26, 2015 at 14:30
Not sure I would agree on the abandoning of a family member Neil.

We could certainly write a scenario when it would be logical to do that , but that scenario would tend to be a short term view.

I well remember a local case when two 80 year olds quietly posted a letter, hoped in the car, stuck the hose from exhaust to inside the car and left our collective presence.

I.E. loss of a loved one can have serious unanticipated long term effects.

What I see , and as recently as this weekend, is that when someone gets it trouble that the logical response goes out the window , and the shortest term fix is what occurs.

Hence I like your statement "and cognitive capacity comes before anything else"
Robin Miller

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Reply By: The Landy - Monday, Jan 26, 2015 at 15:43

Monday, Jan 26, 2015 at 15:43
Trip planning is a key to overcoming many of the issues you may face when travelling, and this should be done in the comfort of your living room, not on the run during an emergency.

I wrote about this in a blog some time ago titled, Trip planning - everything has risk associated with it.

Now whilst you may not be able to plan for every potential issue, you can have thoughts around how you will respond to various scenarios.

And something I am very keen to promote is a universal awareness of what you need to do to survive. Always ask the following question before heading out, whether on a walk in the mountains or a four-wheel drive trip across Australia's wonderful interior.

I've survived the incident, I've activated the PLB, I've called someone on the Satphone, or I've communicated by HF Radio (perhaps all three in succession). But am I equipped to survive the wait for help to arrive? A very basic, but extremely important question...give thought to it before leaving home!

Good topic, Baz - The Landy...
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Reply By: Michael H9 - Monday, Jan 26, 2015 at 15:58

Monday, Jan 26, 2015 at 15:58
The experts tell you in an aeroplane emergency to put your own oxygen mask on before helping your children.
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Follow Up By: Member - ACD 1 - Monday, Jan 26, 2015 at 17:40

Monday, Jan 26, 2015 at 17:40
I don't think this is a sacrifice the youngest/weakest first policy

A few reasons for this approach;

1) 1st rule of rescue - don't become a victim yourself. You can't help others if you succumb to a low oxygen atmosphere.

2) once your mask is activated and you are getting good breathable air, you will calm down, your thinking will become clearer and your coordination will improve and you will be better able to help those around you.

3)young children will see you with a bright orange bowl on your face - the will accept it and alow you to put one over their face.

Cheers

Anthony
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Work - a 40 hour interuption to my weekend!
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Follow Up By: Member - Rosco from way back - Monday, Jan 26, 2015 at 18:15

Monday, Jan 26, 2015 at 18:15
Plus the obvious ... it is better for the child to temporarily loose consciousness due to oxygen deprivation and then revive when you mask them. If you loose consciousness whilst trying to fit them up you may well both be knackered.
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Follow Up By: gbc - Monday, Jan 26, 2015 at 19:35

Monday, Jan 26, 2015 at 19:35
Unfortunately an emergency makes people do completely irrational things for their loved ones. It is for this reason that you will never see a mother seated in an exit row with her children, and if it accidentally happens I've seen hosties split them up or move them completely. I have no problem with this.
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Follow Up By: Michael H9 - Monday, Jan 26, 2015 at 23:44

Monday, Jan 26, 2015 at 23:44
And I thought it was because they wanted me to be completely lucid at the point of impact. Don't black out...you'll miss the ending. :-)

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Reply By: Steve in Kakadu - Monday, Jan 26, 2015 at 16:28

Monday, Jan 26, 2015 at 16:28
A simple first aid course will put you in the best position to help should you have an accident, a remote first aid course is even better.

Danger: check first to see if there is any danger you yourself first then others.

Response: Check for a response.

Send: Send for help if you have someone to help you.

Airway: check air way for blockage.

Breathing: check to see if the person is breathing.

CPR: CPR

Defibrillator: If needed and you have one.

Recovery: Place in recovery position.

If you haven't all ready sent for help or alerted anyone now is the time to do that.

"Rescue your Water and then your Food - forget about camping bags and creature comforts - they won't keep you alive without Water and Food.
Then turn to the question of salvaging your Vehicle, Trailer and Gear."

There are some fundamental mistakes here, there is a rule of thumb for survival.

You can survive 3 hours without shelter from the elements.

You can survive 30 hours without water.

You can survive 30 days without food.

So first make a shelter, then find water and then find food, never leave your vehicle, wait for help.

Hope this helps.







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Follow Up By: Member - Tony F8 - Monday, Jan 26, 2015 at 17:50

Monday, Jan 26, 2015 at 17:50
In my previous life we were taught that shelter, water, food in that order, exposure being the biggest killer of someone being stranded. The body uses water to digest and process food, the adage was 3hrs without shelter, 3 days without water and 3 weeks without food.
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Follow Up By: Member - Tony F8 - Monday, Jan 26, 2015 at 17:52

Monday, Jan 26, 2015 at 17:52
Sorry, didn't see the last post.
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Follow Up By: Sigmund - Tuesday, Jan 27, 2015 at 08:55

Tuesday, Jan 27, 2015 at 08:55
Yeah. If it's cold and you're tired and not insulated hypothermia will start pretty quickly. Then you can't think straight and it all goes pear shaped.
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Reply By: Peter_n_Margaret - Monday, Jan 26, 2015 at 18:45

Monday, Jan 26, 2015 at 18:45
Yachties keep a "grab bag" handy.
It is too late to start collecting bits after the boat starts to sink.

We have one in the form of a medium size back pack the OKA, behind the passenger seat, that can be thrown out the window in the case of a "crash and burn" in a remote location.
Make your own list of the contents..........water, survival blankets, first aid kit, thermals, spare batteries for the sat phone and GPS, fire makers, mirror, .............

Cheers,
Peter
OKA196 Motorhome
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Follow Up By: Member - ACD 1 - Monday, Jan 26, 2015 at 22:36

Monday, Jan 26, 2015 at 22:36
I'm an advocate for,the "grab bag" as well.

Only down side - everything is in the one spot making it easier for the 'tea leaves' to help themselves to it.

Mine was 'liberated' while we were having a swim at Fruit Bat Falls on our trip around Oz.

But I suppose that is why I have insurance - so I can pay for less fortunate people to take ownership of my property.......

Cheers

Anthony
VKS 3539
Work - a 40 hour interuption to my weekend!
Too many places - too little time

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Reply By: CSeaJay - Monday, Jan 26, 2015 at 19:33

Monday, Jan 26, 2015 at 19:33
Neil
I completely see where you are coming from and agree with your thinking. Sometimes hard decisions need to be made
But you are basing this on the assumption that only the organiser has the leadership/skill/knowledge to help the rest out of their predicament. And that one may "bet a life" on this assumption.
All in all, there are sooo many variables in each individual case; and in reality it is human nature to look after oneself. But rarely will the ducks align in such a way that one has to choose between one life over another. Heres hoping anyway.
Cheers, CJ
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