Why is first aid important? It may seem like an easy question, but first aid is an important topic to discuss. The answer is different in almost every situation! Of course, this short answer is that first aid can help save a life or prevent further injury. However, truck drivers are in the unique position of being on the road almost all day long. Regardless of how safely you drive, it is impossible to ensure that every other driver on the road is being safe. For truckers, having a basic knowledge of first aid is very important. Obviously, we hope that you never have to use that knowledge, but it is always better to be safe than sorry!
First Aid Basics for Truck Drivers
What is First Aid?
Before answering the question, why is first aid important, it may be helpful to clarify what first aid is. According to the United States Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration, “first aid refers to medical attention that is usually administered immediately after the injury occurs and at the location where it occurred.” While many people think of first aid as crisis response (which it can be!), it is more often a response to less severe injuries and incidents. First aid can include cleaning minor cuts, treating minor burns, or much more impactful, life-saving actions. Generally speaking, first aid is any action taken at the scene of an incident to minimize the effects of an injury, illness, or other medical emergencies.
Why is First Aid Important?
Ultimately, first aid is important because in an emergency, acting quickly matters. As shown in the video above, first aid can save lives. Reid Heiser, shown in the video, was 17 years old and had only completed his CPR training one week before. Of course, this is an extreme example, but knowledge and training in first aid are important because they can change lives in ways both big and small. Since truck drivers spend so much time on the road and around heavy machinery, the possibility of injuries is always present. What may seem like an inconvenient training program or expense now could end up being crucial for you further on down the road.
What First Aid Supplies Should I Have?
First and foremost, you should have a well-stocked first aid kit. This is usually on most lists of things that truck drivers should have. The majority of the supplies that you need will be found in most varieties. This will include items like bandages, gauze, burn ointment, scissors, antibiotic ointment, and sterilize wipes at a minimum. Obviously, there are various options for you to choose from. Even though it might seem like a good idea to buy the cheapest option now if you ever need to use the kit you will be glad you chose a kit with more supplies. As a general rule of thumb, it is best to have more prepared than you think you need to be.
Where Can I Find First Aid Training?
First aid kits are only the first step in being prepared. While there are many tips you can follow without formal training, first aid certification courses can go a long way in an emergency. Red Cross offers a wide variety of first aid training courses both online and in classrooms all over the country. Although these courses are not free, they are usually relatively affordable. There are also many other organizations that offer first aid training for free or low prices. If you are interested in training, consider asking your carrier if they have any recommendations.
Why is first aid important? First aid is important because you may need to practice it at any moment. Whether you are worried about common truck driver injuries or just want to be prepared for emergencies in all areas of your life, being well versed in first aid is a great place to start. Do you have any first aid stories that you’d like to share? Let us know in the comments below!
Looking for a new job? Being first aid certified is just one more distinguishing aspect of any application!