First in First Aid
Welcome to the August edition of First in First Aid!
It's summer but that won't slow down St. John Ambulance! Across the province our volunteers are helping keep their community safe by providing first aid coverage at a variety of summer celebrations. In this month's edition we recognize our volunteers' contribution to the Pan Am Games, talk fireworks safety and offer first aid tips for managing thermal burns. Don't forget to check out our featured product! We hope you enjoy this edition of First in First Aid.
Our Volunteers Rocked the Pan Am Games!
During the Pan Am Games we had 313 Medical First Response (MFR) volunteers work over 15,000 hours at 32 venues over 19 days, providing care for 569 patients. Many of these volunteers took vacation time from their regular jobs to help out with the Pan Am Games. Some even came from as far away as Newfoundland to offer their support. St. John Ambulance also took part in a one of a kind mental health initiative. For the first time ever at a major sporting event our Therapy Dogs were brought in to promote mental wellness among the competitors. Over 100 Therapy Dog teams visited the Athletes' Village. Our four legged ambassadors treated competitors to lots of wet kisses, tail wags and hugs.
Of course there are the volunteers the public couldn't see like the volunteers working in the Event Operations Centre (EOC). They worked hard to ensure shifts were filled, patient records were filed and resources were shipped to teams at the venues. There were also the 10 members of the St. John Ambulance Pan Am Task force who have been planning our participation in the Games for almost two years.
We are incredibly proud of the contributions our members have made to the success of the Pan Am Games. They met every challenge an event of this scale poses with patience and determination. We have been absolutely humbled by their hard work and dedication. Thank you to all of our members who gave so much to the success of the Pan Am Games, you are amazing!
Want to show our volunteers some love? Stop by and visit them at one of the many public events they cover, snap a picture and share it with us on Twitter. You may even win a Sports First Aid Kit! Want to join in on the fun? Sign up to be a volunteer today. We're always looking for enthusiastic, dedicated people to join our organization. Want to help but don't have the time to give? Make a donation! St. John Ambulance is a not-for-profit, charitable organization that supports itself through the proceeds of our first aid training and product sale, as well as donations.
Product of the Month
Cool Blaze All Purpose Burn Kit & Fire Blanket
Burns can present unique first aid challenges particularly when it comes to dressing and protecting them. Enter Cool Blaze, an "all natural" burn care product that is odourless, effective and gentle. It protects burn injuries while soothing and cooling the affected area. A must have for work, home and play.
Fireworks are beautiful but dangerous. Celebrate safely this long weekend.
The Labour Day long weekend is fast upon us and what better way to close off a weekend of relaxation, barbeques and general outdoor revelry than with an impromptu fireworks display.
Unfortunately every year hundreds of Canadians are injured by fireworks. It is important to remember even though they are beautiful fireworks can be very dangerous. Before you coordinate the grand finally to your long weekend make sure you plan for safety.
Store safely. Chances are you will be purchasing your fireworks ahead of the big show. Make sure they are stored in a dry, safe environment where there is no risk of accidental ignition.
Read the instructions. Any fireworks purchased from a reputable vendor will have safety instructions that outline the safest way to ignite and enjoy your fireworks.
Outdoors only. It should go without saying but even hand held units like sparklers should only be enjoyed outdoors. Choose a wide open area away from flammable things like dried leaves/grass or hanging clothes, and away from people and property.
Supervise for safety. Make sure all children are supervised near fireworks and when using sparklers. When sparklers are spent put them in sand or water to cool them faster.
No pointing. Never aim fireworks at people, animals or property.
Use a launch pad. Fill a bucket with earth or sand and rest it on a level surface, make sure it is secure and won't fall over. Point fireworks as directed on package (typically a 10 degree angle) away from people & property.
Don't fuss over the fuse. Always light the fuse at the tail end. Do not try to shorten or extend it.
Out of hand. Never hold a lit firework or attempt to launch a firework off of your body.
Rescue ready. Keep water or a fire extinguisher on hand in case of a fire and have a first aid kit handy in case someone gets burned.
Don't take a second chance on a dud. If a firework doesn't ignite the first time you lit it, do not attempt to light it again. Do not handle the unexploded firework for 30 minutes (in case of delayed ignition) and do not attempt to repair defective fireworks.
Go public. Sometimes the safest and most stress free way to enjoy a fireworks display is to go to one hosted by the city. Pack some comfy chairs, a blanket and enjoy!
Don't forget your pets! Fireworks are fun for humans but terrifying for some animals.
- Make sure pets are secure in your home and wearing their proper ID tags in case they run away
- Give your pet access to a safe spot like a covered crate or the bathtub
- Plan a big walk early in the day to help reduce nervous energy
- Play soothing music during the fireworks
- If necessary talk to your vet about sedatives, or purchase a thunder shirt
Camp fires, fireworks and steam burn, oh my! Summer is the season for thermal burns
For many Canadians summer is the season of outdoor adventure and activity, unfortunately it is also a season ripe with fiery nuisances. Whether it is a camp fire, barbeque, pot of water, fireworks or hot tongs there are plenty of opportunities to get burned. As such, St. John Ambulance would like to remind everyone how to care for a burn.
Given the types of hazards typical to summer we are going to focus on treating a heat (thermal) burn. Sunburn is classified as a Radiation burn, the best treatment is always prevention. Before you head outside make sure you are wearing adequate sunscreen and you reapply as the day wears on.
First Aid for a Thermal Burn
Cool the burn right away. Immerse the affected area in cool water, pour cool water over it or cover it with a clean, damp cloth. Continue to cool the burn until the pain has lessened.
Loosen or remove anything tight over the burn area (jewellery, clothes). Do this as quickly as possible before the injury begins to swell. Don't remove anything that is stuck.
When the pain has lessened apply a burn dressing. If you don't have a burn dressing use a clean, lint-free dressing (like a linen sheet) and rest it over the injury. Secure it with tape, insuring the tape does not contact the injury. If appropriate seek medical help.
Critical burns - seek medical help immediately!
- Any burns that interfere with breathing, including burns to the face and throat as well as inhalation injuries
- Any burn where there is also a serious soft tissue injury or fracture
- Any burn that occurs where the skin bends, including elbows, knees and neck
- Burns to casualties under two or over fifty years of age
- Burns to people who have serious underlying medical conditions such as diabetes, seizure disorders, hypertension, respiratory difficulties, or mental illness
Remember when treating a burn DO NOT
- Breathe on, cough over or touch the burned area
- Break blisters
- Remove anything stuck to the burned area
- Use butter, lotions or ointments on a burn
- Cover the burn with cotton wool or any fluffy material
- Over cool the casualty
In This Issue
Pan Am Games
Product of the Month
SJA in the News
SJA in the Community
Donate today through Canadahelps.org and help support our community service volunteers! Thank you for your support.
SJA in the News
Tony Alberts of St. John Ambulance has this advice on reducing the risk of suffering heat-related illnesses.
Regardless of how you access the water, you should make safety a priority.
St. John Ambulance is targeting adult males with a message about water safety.
In The Community
May 4th - Dec 10th, 2015
The Northumberland Branch in conjunction with their corporate sponsor Vandermeer Toyota is conducting a draw for a brand new 2015 Toyota Corolla. The proceeds of this draw will be used to further the volunteer work in Northumberland County. Tickets are $20 each or 6 for $100 and can be purchased from the Northumberland Branch or from Vandermeer Toyota.
October 24, 2015
Celebrating 103 years of community services in Hamilton, ON. Full dinner, cash bar, door prizes and raffles! Hosted at the Marquis Gardens on Rymal.
Cadets march from Ottawa to Kingston
A group of cadets from York Region will be trekking from Ottawa to Kingston to raise funds for an upcoming Hong Kong trip.
Four members of the Y1192 York East Cadets will be traveling to Hong Kong as part of the Canadian contingent at the Hong Kong International Cadet Camp in January 2016.
The 18 youths and 19 leaders will start in Ottawa and take in some local sights including the infamous Ottawa Jail and Parliament Hill. They begin their trek August 15th with the goal of reaching Kingston by August 18.
This venture took months of planning by the youth members who have worked hard to ensure that their routes, rest stops, meals and most importantly timing will meet their destination date. Good luck and safe travels!
St. John Ambulance | Council for Ontario
15 Toronto Street, Suite 800
Toronto, ON M5C 2E3
416-923-8411 ext. 252
St. John Ambulance - Council for Ontario | 15 Toronto Street, Suite 800 | Toronto | Ontario | M5C 2E3 | Canada