People working or participating in farm related activities are at increased risk for injuries. There are a lot of uncontrollable environmental factors that can lead to emergency situations. Proper planning and training are essential in mitigating and managing injuries. It is recommended that all individuals who are exposed in farm activities understand and develop basic first aid skills. As much as possible, at least one person on the farm knows basic life support and first aid (learn here). There are different organizations that offer first aid trainings to suit your needs, such as St Mark James.
Don’t Wait To Contact EMS
Time is crucial during an emergency situation. In case of an emergency, you should be ready to promptly respond to the situation. Calling for emergency services is often the best way to handle first aid situations. Emergency hotline numbers must be posted clearly in a conspicuous location, near the telephone. Important emergency numbers include: ambulance, medical doctor, poison control, fire department, police and veterinarian. Cover the emergency numbers with protective lining to prevent water and dust from damaging it.
Every vehicle or tractor on the farm should have a well stocked first aid kit. In addition, all major buildings should have first aid kits. Keep them in secured and accessible places and inform everyone where to locate it. Make sure you have a separate first aid kit for humans and animals to avoid confusion. If using the first aid kit, restock the used supplies immediately. Include a step-by-step by first aid manual in the first aid kit. You can also find commercial first aid kits online.
Keep an inventory of all the herbicides, pesticides and other potential poisons used on the farm. This will assist the rescue services in identifying potential poison taken by the victim. Make sure all chemicals are properly labelled in their containers and are stored properly.
In case of an emergency situation, it is essential that those in the scene of accident remain calm. Avoid panicking as it can only aggravate the situation. The injured persons require support and care of people around. Majority of farm injuries can lead to serious consequences therefore should be taken seriously. For example, minor cuts and scrapes may be infected when exposed to dirt, rust, animal manure and other infected farm equipments. Injuries arising from faulty operation of machineries and falls from buildings are usually the most severe.
If an emergency does occur, your immediate priority should be to preserve the life of the victim and prevent further injury. Approach the casualty and asses his condition. Get information about the nature of the accident and the number of persons involved. Ensure that the victim is safe and call for help. In most cases, moving the victim is NOT recommended, unless there is a clear danger. Provide first aid for injuries such as bleeding, cuts or scrapes.
Monitor the victim continuously, while waiting for emergency services to arrive. Make sure the victim is kept comfortable. Provide reassurance and stay calm.
To learn more about providing first aid to major and minor injuries enrol in workplace approved first aid training programs.