First Aid 2

Explain what D.R.A.B.C. stands for (i.e. D-Danger, R-Response ,A- Airway clear, B-Breathing, C-Circulation). Explain how C.P.R is given. Show three Methods of carrying a casualty with the help of another, and also demonstrate Fireman’s lift

The practice of first aid is often said to be one of 'common sense' and in many ways this is true, for example, if someone is bleeding then the first thing that you want to do is to stop it! No text book (or information sheet!) is a substitute for attending a first aid training course if you wish to progress further than the few simple procedures mentioned here. In Scouting we are involved in activities all the time, which can potentially result in accidents whether indoors or outdoors and so it is desirable that we all have a basic understanding of first aid.

What is DRABC?

The DRABC procedure or the primary survey will allow you to establish what level of first aid you need to administer and if you need to call the emergency services. First aiders split the primary survey into the steps D-R-A-B-C, you can remember this easily by remembering DR ABC.

What does DRABC stand for?

DRABC stands for Danger, Response, Airway, Breathing and Circulation. As a First Aider, when you encounter a casualty, you need to do the initial DRABC procedure, otherwise known as the primary survey.

What are the main objectives of first aid?

Before even thinking about administering any first aid, it is good to know what you are doing. As a calm and measured first aider, you need to think about the 3P’s… yes another acronym.

First aid is all about:

Preserve life – you are preventing that person from losing their life.

Prevent further injury – you don’t want the casualty to become even more injured. Make sure that the casualty has a good supply of oxygen and that they are in a safe position. Ideally, casualties shouldn’t be moved, but if you have no other option maker sure you move them properly and carefully.

Promote recovery – you need to take the relevant steps to promote recovery; whether that is applying bandages or cold compresses or putting them into the recovery position. Continue promoting recovery until the emergency help arrives.

What are the 5 elements of a primary survey (DRABC)?

D – Danger

On the first step of DRABC, you need to determine whether it is safe to approach the casualty and that yourself and anyone else isn’t in a position also to become a casualty. For example; this could be stopping any oncoming traffic, looking out for live electricity, looking out for any places you could fall or trip over.

Once you can confirm there is no potential danger, you can begin to assess the casualty.

R – Response

Next, you need to try and get some response from the casualty so the casualty can tell you what is wrong with them. To do this, use the AVPU scale, which will help you scale the level of response from the casualty.

  • A – Alert: first of all, is the casualty moving or talking? If not, proceed to V.

  • V – Voice: Try speaking to the casualty loudly and clearly to see if they respond to speech. Make sure that you are in the casualty’s eye line so that they can see who is talking. If you get no response, proceed to P.

  • P – Place: Place your hand on the collarbone of the casualty and carefully but firmly shake them. At this point, you need to continue to speak to the casualty, making them aware of who you are. P can also stand for pain if the casualty responds as if they are in discomfort. If they do not show any signs of responsiveness proceed to U.

  • U – Unresponsive: at this point, you can assume the casualty is unresponsive.

A – Airways

Now you need to investigate why the casualty is unresponsive by checking their airway. To do this, you need to place the casualty on their back and tilt their head back. Place your hand on the chin and forehead and lightly tip back their head. With your fingertips on the chin of the casualty lift their mouth open to open the airways.

B – Breathing

When the airway is open; look out for any signs of normal breathing for 10 seconds. Look out for if the casualty looks to be breathing abnormally, infrequently or not at all. Start applying CPR if you notice any of these symptoms.

If the casualty is unresponsive but is breathing normally and isn’t in a state where they can be moved without damaging them further put them into the recovery position.

C – Call 1919,119 / Circulation

If you reach this point and the casualty isn’t breathing you need to get someone to call 119/1919 or if you are alone put your phone on speakerphone and do it yourself. Never start CPR until the emergency services have been called. If possible, get someone to go and get an AED while you speak to the emergency services and stay with the casualty if you are alone.


Some people consider the defibrillation stage as its own step in the DRABC procedure, therefore calling it DRABCD. Using a defibrillator is key to keeping someone alive, and you need to take it seriously as a step.

CPR - Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation

Cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) can help save a life during a cardiac or breathing emergency. However, even after training, remembering the CPR steps and administering them correctly can be a challenge.

Before Giving CPR

  1. Check the scene and the person. Make sure the scene is safe, then tap the person on the shoulder and shout "Are you OK?" to ensure that the person needs help.

  2. Call 119/1919 for assistance. If it's evident that the person needs help, call (or ask a bystander to call) 119, then send someone to get an AED. (If an AED is unavailable, or a there is no bystander to access it, stay with the victim, call 119/1919 and begin administering assistance.)

  3. Open the airway. With the person lying on his or her back, tilt the head back slightly to lift the chin.

  4. Check for breathing. Listen carefully, for no more than 10 seconds, for sounds of breathing. (Occasional gasping sounds do not equate to breathing.) If there is no breathing begin CPR.

CPR Steps

  1. Push hard, push fast. Place your hands, one on top of the other, in the middle of the chest. Use your body weight to help you administer compressions that are at least 2 inches deep and delivered at a rate of at least 100 compressions per minute.

  2. Deliver rescue breaths. With the person's head tilted back slightly and the chin lifted, pinch the nose shut and place your mouth over the person's mouth to make a complete seal. Blow into the person's mouth to make the chest rise. Deliver two rescue breaths, then continue compressions.

    Note: If the chest does not rise with the initial rescue breath, re-tilt the head before delivering the second breath. If the chest doesn't rise with the second breath, the person may be choking. After each subsequent set of 30 chest compressions, and before attempting breaths, look for an object and, if seen, remove it.

  3. Continue CPR steps. Keep performing cycles of chest compressions and breathing until the person exhibits signs of life, such as breathing, an AED becomes available, or EMS or a trained medical responder arrives on scene.

    Note: End the cycles if the scene becomes unsafe or you cannot continue performing CPR due to exhaustion.

Carrying a Casualty

One Arm Carry

Single rescuer to lift a victim safely by arm carries. Rescuer holding the victim around the victim’s back and under the knees.

Two Handed Seat

This technique is for carrying a victim to the longer distances and can support an unconscious victim.

  • Pick up the victim by having both rescuers squat down on either side of the victim.

  • Reach under the victim's shoulders and under their knees.

  • Grasp the other rescuer's wrists.

  • From the squat, with good lifting technique, stand.

  • Walk in the direction that the victim is facing.

Three Person Carry

This technique is for lifting a patient into a bed or stretcher, or for transporting to short distances

  • Each person kneels on the knee nearest the victim's feet.

  • On the command of the person at the head, the rescuers lift the victim up and rest the victim on their knees.

If the patient is being placed on a low stretcher or litter basket:

  • On the command of the person at the head, the patient is placed down on the litter/stretcher.

If the victim is to be placed on a high gurney/bed or to be carried:

  • At this point, the rescuers will rotate the victim so that the victim is facing the rescuers, resting against the rescuers' chests.

  • On the command of the person at the head, all the rescuers will stand.

  • To walk, all rescuers will start out on the same foot, walking in a line abreast.

Fireman's Lift

Every man should know how to perform what is called the “fireman’s carry.” It’s an effective way to distribute someone’s weight, allowing you to haul them over long distances with minimal strain. Here’s how it’s done:

1. Raise the victim to a standing position. This is no easy task if they’re dead to the world. Start by rolling them on their stomach and kneel by their head. Stick your arms under their armpits and around their back. Raise the victim to his feet. Lift with your legs, not with your back.

2. Shift your weight to your right leg and stick it between the victim’s legs. Grab the victim’s right hand with your left, and drape it over your shoulder. With your head under the victim’s right armpit, wrap your arm around the back of his right knee. Squat down and position his body on your shoulders. Try to equally distribute his body weight on each side.

3. Grab the victim’s right hand with your right hand. Your left hand is free to judo chop would-be assailants.

4. Transport your victim.

Here’s a handy diagram:

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