It is really important to keep your outdoor first aid and field safety skills up to speed, so stop what you are doing, strained your brain back to your last training course and see if you can answer these…
If you read our last newsletter – this should be an easy one!
You are out skiing. Your friend falls at speed and immediately following the incident is confused and dizzy. A few minutes later they are feeling fine and insist they are OK and continue skiing for the rest of the day. At dinner that evening they feel sick and leave the table. When you go to find them they say they have been sick but are feeling OK now and just want to go to bed. What would you do?
The simple rule is any change in conscious level, following a head injury should go to hospital to be checked by a professional. In particular now that symptoms have got worse rather than better we would be further concerned and should monitor them very carefully and if at all possible get them checked by a doctor. It could be a concussion or a compression – one will generally get better, the other could get worse and even be fatal – so play it safe and get them checked. If you would like more of a recap, check out our blog on dealing with head injuries.
You are organising a geography fieldwork trip for a group of 30 undergraduates to the Low Tatras Mountains in Slovakia. You are preparing a risk assessment – what would be your top five considerations…
OK – lots of potential for debate in coming up with a top five but we’ve gone with:
1 – Transport – probably has to come in any top five, sadly road traffic collisions account for most of the serious incidents which occur on overseas trips
2 – Downtime – management of what the students do when not in the program of study is a tricky business which needs some thinking about!
3 – Slips and falls in a mountainous environment – here we have both the common and relatively non-severe twists, sprains and breaks, and of course more serious falls from height.
4 – Weather – any factor which is as changeable and sometime unpredictable as the weather can be a major hazards.
5 – Wolves and bears – interesting one, the chances of a wolf or bear attack is really pretty slim, but clearly the consequences could be great so that’s snuck it into our top 5!