Ian N Ford (ianford@DIRCON.CO.UK)
Thu, 1 Feb 1996 20:28:28 +0000
Robert is right about the first rule of first aid, rescue or whatever ...
make sure that you do not become the next victim. When I teach courses I
say that if you go for a rescue and blow it the next rescuer has two
unconscious victims ... he can probably only resuscitate one. If you are
the chosen one the guy you went to rescue has had it ... if he doesn't
choose you then you might get a posthumous medal for being a good loser.
There is a world of difference between experienced adult rescuers and
kids who earn a merit badge on Summer camp ...
>From what I recall the Royal Life Saving Society (UK) do not teach
contact rescues or tows below Bronze Medallion standard. This is the
professional qualification for swimming teachers , pool lifequards etc.
and is a very tough exam. I believe the minimum age for taking it is 14,
but youngsters have a tough time because they get the same assessment as
the river police, Coast Guard etc. for whom it is a professional requirement.
Of course there are exceptional acts of bravery , and thank God for them.
But as Scouters we are not training professional rescuers ... if Scouts
are serious they can join a swimming club or the American Red Cross ,
Royal Life Saving Society or whatever. We have to plan our training so
that the average kid who is probably unfit , does not swim regularly and
may only have a few hours of intensive instruction on Summer Camp does
not go out thinking that he can save the Titanic single-handed.
Terry Howerton Sakima Group, Inc. SCOUTER Magazine Kansas City