Dark Angel Medical – Tactical Aid 2-Day Course
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Dark Angel Medical – Tactical Aid 2-Day Course

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I just finished a 2-Day course put on by Dynamic Incident Response in Randolph, MA.  There is one word that I can use to describe the course and that is WOW!  Kerry Davis AKA Dark Angel  welcomes each person into the room with a “hello”, a hand shake and very thick manual.  The first thing that Kerry tells you is that you do not need to be an EMT, Military, Law Enforcement, or HSLD. His class is more than just patching up entry and exit wounds.  Kerry covers what you need to know when you come upon a scene and there are people hurt. You need to eliminate the threat (if applicable to your situation) and then treat your victim(s).  Below is a description of his 2-Day course. 

 Day 1 started with introductions and there was a mix of EMT, local Law Enforcement, and Civilians.  We were also lucky enough to have Jackson McWade from EFP Tactical Medical Group in our class. Jackson showed us some great carries/drags on Day 2 (more on that to come).

We started out with a discussion of ethics, legality, and good samaritan laws. One thing you first come away with is that you need to assist if you have the proper training. You need to be aware of your local laws and the possibility that you could be involved in a lawsuit after assisting or saving someone.

Next we reviewed the Warrior Mindset. Most people want to help the victim(s) first, but if a threat is still present, you need to eliminate the threat, and complete the mission first. Then, you render care to yourself (self-aid) or to your buddy(buddy care).   We then covered the body alarm response, and how the body could react. Would you freeze, take flight, or fight? Each person’s body and mind will do something different.  We then covered what happens to your body when adrenaline takes cover. For example, you can lose your fine hand motor skills. That can affect how you get into your first aid kit, and the operation of that equipment.

We then started to talk about First Aid/Medical Kits.  In reality, you do not need much for a personal kit. You can treat many injuries with a pressure dressing, SOT/SWAT-T Tourniquet, Israeli Dressing, Gauze, Nitrile Gloves, and EMT Shears. And if you know how to use Halo Seals, add those to your kit. All of those items will take up very little space.

We talked about the components that can go into a medical kit and Kerry stressed that we expose ourselves to the different types of bandages and tourniquets because you never know what will be available to you in a med kit. You may not even have the items you need and have to improvise.  Kerry said this several times over the two day class “Two is One, and One is none” because you may need more than one splint, one bandage, one tourniquet.  And, if you have used the kit in the past, have you gone into to see what needs to be replaced?

HALO Seals – 2 per pack

CAT Tourniquet

QuickClot’s Combat Gauze

Israeli Bandage

We spent a lot of time reviewing equipment – how they are used and the differencesbetween different manufactures. It was great to see the items in person and on Day 2, we would have several hours of hands-on practice with them. And, another take away from the class – do you know what is in your kit? Do you know how to use it? If you are going to practice with a tourniquet, then keep it for practice or purchase a training unit. Each time you use one, you decrease the effectiveness of it.

We then went over assessing the victim and checking on their airway, their breathing, the body’s cirulation, and finally the brain of the victim.  We then went into the basics of treating a person in different situations, and with different injuries.

Finally, to end Day 1 we went over environmental injuries and watched a few videos. Day 1  was amazing, a ton of information was dolled out by Kerry and the class was excited for day 2.

Day 2 started with a review of what happens to the human body when a bullet enters it.  We went over the differences between low velocity and high velocity bullets and what damage can be done when the bullet enters the body. As Kerry said “Bullets do weird S@#$T”.  We discussed what can happen when different types of ammunition are used and what the end results look like. We then went into assessment and treatment of a gunshot victim and the need to be careful to not focus on one injury that looks catastrophic.  You need to make sure that there no other injuries that could cause harm to the patient.

We then covered blast injuries, blade injuries, fratures, and amputations.  Each time, Kerry reviewed what you need to first: “Stop the Bleeding!” Or, as we learned, we all stop bleeding at some point.

We then covered how different injuries can affect how you treat the victim(s) and we ended on a excellent discussion on Shock and how to recognize the four stages of Shock and what to do to prevent Shock from getting worse.

Finally, we talked about triage and why behind needing a triage system in place if you are helping during a mass casuality.

That ended the lecture. Now, we entered the practical section of the class!

After lunch, Kerry has everyone in the class use each of the different types of tourniquets, SAM splints, DIY splints. We each took turns inserting an airway into the nasal cavity of a dummy, and packing a “wound” on a roast with gauze (and discussed the use of QuickClot).  Once that was done, we headed to the gym to for timed tourniquet drills and review of carries/drags.

We were asked to place a tournquet on our left or right arm and tighen it down in 20 seconds. I can tell you that it is very hard to do this without practice!  This is where I learned what I liked and did not like between the different tourniquets.  You may be asking why 20 seconds. A person with a serious wound to an atery can bleed out in 20 seconds and lose conscouness.

We finished with Jackson going over the different ways to use a drag strap and different types of one man and two man carries.  You can do a lot with webbing, and caribeaners.  It was really great to  see how quickly you can get to a person and, if needed, remove them for the area.

We ended day 2 with the final debrief and each student talked about what they took away from the class. The one comment that each student mentioned was how easy the information was to digest and understand.

I want to say Thank You to Kerry for running an amazing class. This is a must for everyone! You do not need to be military or law enforcement, or have a medical background.  This class will give you the skill set to treat someone until the EMS or Police arrive.

Also, a huge thank you to Mike Martin of Dynamic Incident Response for bringing Kerry to New England, and finally to Jackson McWade for his training on the drags and carries.

It may be called Tactical Aid, but it is a class that everyone can take and leave with soemthing that can help save someone’s lives.

 

 

 

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Dark Angel Medical - Tactical Aid 2-Day Course, 4.0 out of 5 based on 1 rating

2 Comments

  1. The Gear Locker | RE Factor Tactical
    July 1, 2012, 8:04 pm

    […] few weeks ago, TGL attended DARK Angle’s Tactical First Aid Class. During the class, we were taught the use and placement of different styles of tourniquets.  After […]

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  2. […] to be invited to DARK Angel’s 2-Day Tactical First Aid course (which you can read a review of here).  While at the class, I was able to get my hands on one of their D.A.R.K. First Aid Pouches (2nd […]

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