We aren't the only ones harping on the importance of accessible, quality trauma gear. I pulled three videos from the well-known channel (ASP) Active Self Protection. The host of that channel, John Correia, takes videos that have to do with the application, mindset, legality or tools associated with self defense. He provides thoughtful analysis intended to help equip the viewer with a better understanding of how to develop a self-defense mindset, and what it looks like in daily life. If you haven't already subscribed to the channel, you should.
Following The Rules of Gun Safety Matters—
The first video is from the Dominican Republic and shows a couple of guys cleaning their firearms. Both men violate the basic firearm safety rules in several ways. I don't think one can stress enough the importance of not only following the firearm safety rules, but really understanding how to apply them whenever we are handling, or around anyone else handling firearms.
WARNING, SPOILER ALERT: neglecting the safety rules leads to the shooting and death of one of the two men in this video.
What we learn from the video is that the man shot in the chest ultimately dies. Now it's unknown if the man could have survived the gunshot wound to the chest, if the other men in this video had access to trauma gear and knew how to use it. The man's unfortunate death is awful, but—not wanting to sound insensitive to his unnecessary death—is irrelevant to the point I'm making about accessibility to trauma gear.
The point I want to make is that negligence, accidents, inattentiveness, etc. isn't something people do purposefully. That doesn't mean we can't prepare for those events. And not planning for them because we think they could never happen to us, is foolish and we are deceiving ourselves. We can only directly control our actions, not those in the next bay over at the shooting range, or the careless person nearby who is cleaning their gun.
The Situation Can Change in the Blink of an Eye—
In this video we see officers on a traffic stop engage with someone they know is trafficking meth. The point of this post isn't to address the tactics of the officer's approach or contact, or their pre or post shooting actions, but there is plenty to pull from the video if you want to.
The main point I want to make is that there was a time when officers did not carry trauma gear in their vehicle, let alone on their person. Prior to law enforcement's wider acceptance to add trauma gear to officer's gear, these guys would have needed to improvise a tourniquet, or wait for EMS.
You man not be an officer, but I think this applies equally to civilians as well. Carrying trauma gear on you, vs leaving it in the vehicle could have serious consequences. Imagine if it would have been necessary for the injured officer's partner to drag him to cover and could not get back to his vehicle where the trauma gear was. Much better would be to have the gear on you, hand the injured officer the TQ to self apply while you deal with the threat.
Similarly, if you're a civilian and need to provide emergency aid to someone inside the mall or at a park, or on the range, you might not have the time to run back to the vehicle to grab trauma gear.
You Don't Have Much Time—
I think you probably already get the point that quick access to trauma gear is important. But just how much time do I have to intervene in a medical emergency? Well, obviously that question depends on the type of injury. Immediate intervention is important in massive bleeding injuries, and that is why most trauma kits have gear specific to stop bleeding injuries.
Quick sidebar—what should you include in your trauma kit? Learn more here.
Our last video comes from Chi-na, and we see a man attack another man using a knife. WARNING SPOILER ALERT: the injured man dies from his injuries.
I don't know what caused the conflict and know nothing about the people involved. The injured man might have been the initial attacker, might have tried to reach for a weapon and was too slow, or could be just an unfortunate victim of a man armed with a knife, and a country that bars him, or any bystander, from carrying a firearm for self defense.
We see just how fast an arterial bleed can lead to death if there is no intervention. If one bystander had properly applied a tourniquet, the injured person might have survived. But the human body just can't lose that much blood without irreversible damage. In this online course called Emergency Response Training, Navy Corpsman Brian McLaughlin gives a thorough, yet simple lesson on how anyone can use the basic tools in a trauma kit to intervene in an emergency.
China is the major source of many of the counterfeit tourniquets sold on sites like Amazon. Please ensure that your trauma kit includes components sourced from respected manufacturers or authorized resellers. The failure rate on counterfeit tourniquets is too high to risk your life on.
Keep Your Trauma Gear Close—
You never know when you may need to intervene in a medical emergency to save your own life, or someone else's. Your far more likely to need trauma gear than need to use a firearm in self defense. This doesn't mean I don't think you should carry a firearm. The gun is a tool that saves tens, to hundreds of thousand lives per year. But a gun isn't the best tool to stop an arterial bleed, a trauma kit is.
So my point is, it's not carry one OR the other, it's carry both.
What do you think? Let us know below.