Uncontrolled bleeding is the number one cause of preventable death from trauma. A person who is bleeding can die from blood loss within five minutes. No matter how quickly emergency responders arrive, bystanders will typically be first on the scene. You can help save a life by knowing how to stop bleeding if someone, including yourself, is injured. Remember the ABCs of bleeding control:
Alert: Call 9-1-1
Bleeding: Find & Control Source
Compress: Apply Pressure
Bleeding Control Instructions
Ensure the scene is safe. If you become injured, you will not be able to help the victim. Protect yourself from bloodborne infections by wearing gloves provided in the Bleeding Control Kit.
Find the source of bleeding. If the injury is to the chest, skip to the Open Chest Wound Instructions below. Otherwise, using your gloved hand or fingers, apply firm direct pressure to the wound. Use two hands if needed. Direct pressure can stop even major arterial bleeding.
Apply a clean dry cloth or gauze from the Bleeding Control Kit to the wound. Don't release pressure to check the wound. Apply additional cloth or gauze if needed. Do not remove any cloth or gauze from the wound.
If direct pressure is not enough to control bleeding, and the injury is to an extremity (arm or leg), take a tourniquet from the kit. Watch this video for instructions on how to apply a tourniquet.
Open Chest Wound Instructions
Identify injury to the chest area by exposing the chest (trauma shears/scissors are available in the Bleeding Control Kit).
Pull out the chest seal from the Bleeding Control Kit and open it up.
Wipe the area with gauze.
Place the chest seal directly over top of the wound. Seals can be applied to entry wounds, exit wounds, or both.
For additional information, watch the below video.