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Real First Aid at Airsoft Events.

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I've sat on this for a few weeks now but decided to post and get some views on it.

 

I'm lucky that through work I have had plenty of training around first aid. This includes basic life saving, first aid at work and also Trauma intervention (D13 to those who are in the same line of work as me.)

 

I also regularly risk asses operational deployments and training.

 

So what prompted this post?

 

A few weeks ago, whilst at a gaming site, a pyro was thrown at a prone gamer and exploded on their back. The circumstances were freak and non intentional but that isn't the point of the post. The player was wearing a plate carrier and the pyro caught between that and his UBACS as he rolled away. The UBACS was obviously good quality and took a lot of the blast but the player seemed in pain stripping off his clothes.

 

I began to empty my canteen on the burn, which luckily was only minor. The Marshals were there and helping but when I asked for more water there was none. I asked about the medic kit and was told it was in the safe zone. This was a good 10 minutes away at a jog.

 

Luckily the player was not badly injured and shrugged off any further attention and all was well.

 

But is it.

 

The site had 2 trained first aiders (typically the player who was injured was one!) and is well organised and run. I'm happy to take my 13 year old daughter there regularly. But I have to wonder. What type of medic kit is available? Is it readily available. Do they have a casualty evacuation plan?

 

By virtue of game type, most of these sites are remote and difficult to find making any arrival of the emergency services drawn out and eating into the Golden Hour.

 

Now some of you may say man up and grow a pair but in 6 months I have seen two serious wounds caused by barbed wire and the burns. Thats ignoring the bumps, slips and bruises.

 

My thoughts are to have a chat with the organisers and offer to help. Maybe write up some plans or check those that have been done. Maybe offer to be one of the playing First Aiders on the day. Even Suggest the kit goes to the scenario as well as the evacuation vehicle. I'm not looking for anything and would still pay to game.

 

The problem is when ever i'm on site I seem to be surrounded by people who were snipers/armourers/body guards/on the balcony of the iranian embassy etc etc so anticipate they may have heard it all before and be sceptical about individuals with alleged skills.

 

So what do the sites you visit do?

 

What do you as airsofters think?

 

I could do nothing as I carry a kit on me and could probably deal with the immediate problems as they went and got the kit, but stepping up out of the blue amongst strangers can cause some excitement especially if the strangers think they know best.

 

I'll probably pop down to see them this weekend for a chat and see how it goes. They are good people.

 

Thanks for listening.

 

CBH

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It's an interesting point CBH.

A site I use to play regularly at always mentioned in their safety briefings that any medication/asthma pumps should *always* be carried in left breast pocket. This way, everyone always knows where to find it.

Fortunately it was a small site in the middle of town, so access was always quick and easy.

 

However, with hindsight, First Aid is rarely "advertised" on sites.

The worst case I've seen, personally, is a teammate putting his knee into a Wasp Nest. This lead to 10-15 people being stung dozens of times; 2 ended up going to A&E as a precaution.

 

I admit it's probably a very rare case (I bloody well hope!!), but the marshals seemed reasonably good at fixing us all back up again with a basic med kit. They used the sites 4x4s to get us out of the games zone/ safe zone to the Dual Carriage Way Parking where we were all parked and the ambulance could get to us.

No telling what would have happened if one of us had bust a leg running away.

 

I would have thought that Risk Assessment, First Aid etc would be a huge part of any Insurance though....right??

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One site I've been to, a guy had a heart attack & they were with him like a shot & glad to say he's recovering. Another site I use regularly had a guy break his leg & the ambulance had to drive up the muddy track. Another guy I know of badly sprained his ankle & was helped to the safe zone

 

I was first aid trained many years ago (military & civilian) & I do try to keep up with modern techniques, I carry a small first aid kit for cuts etc but my regular site has a good first aid kit & plan in place, its always mentioned in the brief if something happens then pass it on

 

To save the guy who broke his leg there, we were ushered to a point away from the incident & moved around as he was taken to the ambulance. Marshalls were on it the whole time

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It's a good point. I also have to (far to often for me) write Rams involving some of the points you have mentioned. For me there are a few issues compounding the problem. Firstly a lot of sites see the injury waiver as a reason not to have a full grasp on potential risks. Most sites around the uk don't run as stand alone businesses, by which I mean the owner/organiser has another job as Airsoft dosnt have the mainstream appeal or the high turnover of paintball. Thirdly there is a certain level of risk which goes along with paying toy guns in a remote area of the woods, as with any outdoor activity, which we must except.

It isn't something I have ever thought about as 90% of my games a cqb where the same zone is in the same building or within a minute or two.

Airsoft/paintball sites seem to me not to dance to the same h+s music that the rest of the business world is adopting. Is this because the hse don't regulate pastimes? I don't know. And at the end of the day we all get shot at for fun! Explain that one to a "normal" person.

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I carry a very basic first aid kit with me when I play (I have an IFAK on my kit... might as well use it!), saline for washing eyes if necessary, 2 israeli bandages, some sticky plasters, a tourniquet (you never know...), a small roll of gauze, and some zinc oxide tape.

Covers all the injuries I'm competent to deal with myself in the short term ranging from a scuffed knee to an arterial bleed.

 

Most of the likely first aid problems at an airsoft game just don't have a 'first aid' solution that you can easily carry around, heart attacks, sprains, broken bones, eye trauma... doesn't matter what kit you have to hand with a lot of those, it's going to be bad!

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ive often wondered this, as far as i am aware, the marshalls at games ive been are 'first aid trained' but not sure what to what level, i know very basic first aid and recently had to do FA Emergecny 1st aid training...so no running on hard surfaces with bladed football boots on....

 

At Tuddenham it sounds like it is taken seriously and there is a code word if someone is injured and play needs to stop, but ive never been told where a 1st aid kit is at a site, unless I need not know....

 

after recent training, Asbestos.....now there is another subject to post up!......many of the old sites are still riddled with it :(

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Something to bear in mind regardless of your level of training, readiness or equipment is that you probably aren't insured unless you are registered with the site as an approved first aider. As a result no matter how well intentioned you are, you potentially open yourself to being sued by the very people you're trying to help.

 

Sad but unfortunately true.

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Something to bear in mind regardless of your level of training, readiness or equipment is that you probably aren't insured unless you are registered with the site as an approved first aider. As a result no matter how well intentioned you are, you potentially open yourself to being sued by the very people you're trying to help.

 

Sad but unfortunately true.

Isnt that the case with all first aid though, but as your trying to help save the person, its normally dismissed in court?, well that's what we got told recently on the FA one, but I have heard/read people doing this

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My regular site always runs with at least two FirstAiders. They claim they are 'sports first aid trained', whatever that is. But I've seen them handle stuff like (what I was told was) a bad fall mid game where a chap fell and knocked himself out on his rifle stock as he fell. I have confidence in them as they handled that very smoothly and appropriately.

 

But I also know another site where if you were bleeding out on the floor, the 1 first aider would be trying to apply the dried up Dora the Explorer plaster from their £3.99 first aid kit to your gushing would, while the other marshals stood around chortling and inhaling their vape pipes.

 

Safety is not treated as it should.

The bare minimum necessary is far too often the norm, and unfortunately the sheer volume of quasi-macho retards who gravitate towards skirmishes don't help. When all it takes is a high-vis vest and chumminess with site leaders to become a Marshall, principles of health, safety and wellbeing are just not being in-bed with the games - ass-baggery is instead.

And yet, if such sites have a good game coming up - id still be interested in going - such is the human condition.

 

Oh and to OP - if you want to offer up your expertise to a site, I commend you sir and would encourage you to do so.

I can't see any logical non-moron player opposing such contingency planning. And if they do, next time they are bleeding out on the floor - let it happen. I'd call it an act of natural selection.

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Where i play, i see all marshals have a small 1st aid kit on their belt.

Also in the briefing, they make a note of any epi pen people (not that anyone ever has one) and that all medication is put in the top left pocket in case of emergency.

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Something to bear in mind regardless of your level of training, readiness or equipment is that you probably aren't insured unless you are registered with the site as an approved first aider. As a result no matter how well intentioned you are, you potentially open yourself to being sued by the very people you're trying to help.

 

Sad but unfortunately true.

This isn't true, where did you read this? Being qualified through a recognised organisation means you can't be sued for attempting to save anyone.

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This isn't true, where did you read this? Being qualified through a recognised organisation means you can't be sued for attempting to save anyone.

 

Trigger's link above indicates otherwise.

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I honestly cant remember ever hearing first aid mentioned at my regular site however I know I have 9 years army working in ambulance and have continuation training with scouts and I am positive i could handle most situations with my mini trauma kit I always carry airsofting.

 

I would have thought a first aider and a risk assessment and evacuation plan were mandatory for insurance purposes and required by law by the HSE.

 

also in Scotland the good Samaritan act/law states if you do not stop to give aid to someone who needs it you will be prosecuted ( it means phone 999 basically not perform open heart surgery)

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This isn't true, where did you read this? Being qualified through a recognised organisation means you can't be sued for attempting to save anyone.

It is true that you CAN be, the burden of proof is for you to prove you were acting within your skill level and in the best interest of the person. Y do you think first aid kits don't have paracetamol in them? Because if you give them out you are ineffect perscribing it to that person and could be sued if they have a reaction.

Just to go a little further if you are first aid trained and you break someone's ribs whilst performing CPR then you will not be held accountable as the person will have zero chance for survival unless you intervene.

 

The Scottish law is in place however it is very easy to get out of as you only have to aid if YOU feel it is safe to do so. Would you want your wife goin down a dark ally to help a junkie that had been stabbed? I wouldn't even want her to get here phone out untill she was in crowded place or in a nearby house.

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Trigger's link above indicates otherwise.

I just read it, I wouldnt be to worried personally. I remember it briefly coming up on a course once and the teacher informing us if you were qualified no one could ever successfully sue you. Can you imagine the ramifications if it ever became an acceptable thing?

 

I have given first aid 3 times in the last 4-5 years. Putting an arm in a sling is 1 thing, giving CPR to someone who with a 1% chance, who is covered in blood and sick, is another. It's a traumatic enough experience as it is. If I ever saved anyone and they tried to sue me I'd be horrified.

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