OK so it’s THAT time of year… we start really remembering what cold feels like, the evenings draw in, the leaves are falling off the trees…. cosy, right??
HOPEFULLY!!! The fact is that anything can happen at any time and it helps to have this in mind and be aware this new season can have its own hazards!
GARDEN RAKES – clearing the garden and gathering the leaves off the lawn before the last mow of the year? Then mind what you do with those garden tools! And over enthusiastic dig into the wet soil with a GARDEN FORK or a GARDEN RAKE left on the floor can lead to impalement-in other words you stab yourself with the tool and it’s stuck in you. So, to prevent this, always look at what you are doing with a tool and when you are not using them, store them upright against a stable wall or fence in a place they can be easily seen. But accidents do happen.
Q WHAT DO YOU DO IF YOU IMPALE YOURSELF?
A LEAVE IT THERE!!
If it is a large object, lay yourself or the casualty on the floor. Keep the tool (or stick or whatever it is) still, and call 999.
If it is small or short, leave it but steady it by putting a dressing of any sort (cloth, unwrapped bandage, scarf) around it then use ANOTHER dressing to secure it there.
Finally, KEEP CALM. Yes, it’s easy to say but it helps keep the object still and if any sedation is needed it helps the casualty to react to that well – the after effects of sedation are better for a calm person.
Next autumnal danger;
BONFIRES AND FIREWORKS – The dangers here are probably obvious – burns. As adults, we can be more cautious, but children can be very fascinated by fire. Make sure they understand that they need to respect fire and keep a safe distance from it. Supervise them at all times. Be aware that loose clothing and polyester clothing can be a fire hazard – especially costumes and nightwear.
DO NOT ALLOW CHILDREN OR YOUNG PEOPLE TO GO ANYWHERE NEAR FIRE IF THEY ARE IN COSTUMES OR POLYESTER NIGHT WEAR.
Fireworks can also mesmerise people – they can be so pretty and the danger seems far away. However, a burnt-out firework can still be dangerously hot. NEVER RETURN TO AN UNEXPLODED FIREWORK and have a bucket of cold water ready for finished sparklers to be put in. But accidents do happen.
Q WHAT DO YOU DO IF YOU OR SOMEONE HAS A BURN?
A Our First Aid advice on this would be to :
1. COOL THE BURN FOR 10 MINUTES MINIMUM – this is important. You can’t shorten the time or the skin will remain hot and continue to be damaged by the heat.
2. REMOVE JEWELLERY. This is also vital. The body will send fluid to cushion the injury. Any jewellery will restrict the swelling and possibly the blood supply as well!
3. If skin layers are exposed and need dressing – WRAP IN A LAYER OF CLINGFILM. This can easily be removed and will not stick into the wound.
So! Autumn…not quite as innocent as you thought but with a little bit of planning, we can all be as protected as possible.
Of course, here at Siren, we give training on how to handle the above dangers – book yourself in for a First Aid course to feel confident in an unexpected first aid situations.
In the meantime, take care and stay safe