Who can respond and control bleeding?
- Trauma Professionals: Hospitalists, Emergency department physicians, nurses, and technician, and trauma surgeons.
- Professional First Responders: Law enforcement, Emergency Medical Service Personnel, Fire Fighters, and Rescue Workers.
- Immediate Responders: Civilian bystanders present at the scene who perform external bleeding control for victims before the arrival of professional responders.
Who is an immediate responder? You!!
How to Stop the Bleed
If you have witnessed a traumatic event and someone is bleeding profusely, you can stop the bleed!
- Before making contact with the victim, ensure your safety in the situation and call 911, or instruct someone else to call 911. If you become injured, you cannot help the victim. If at any time you feel as if your safety is threatened, leave the area (with the victim if possible) as quickly as possible.
- Find the source of the bleeding.
- Open or remove clothing so you can clearly see the wound.
- Identify “life threatening” bleeding:
- Blood that is spurting out of the wound
- Blood that won’t stop coming out of the wound
- Blood that is pooling on the ground
- Clothing that is soaked with blood
- Bandages that are soaked with blood
- Loss of all or part of an arm or leg
- Bleeding in a victim that is confused or unresponsive
- Compress and control the wound.
- Take any clean cloth, like a t-shirt, cover the wound, and press firmly with both hands.
- If the wound is large and deep, try to stuff the cloth into the wound.
- Apply continuous pressure with both hands directly on top of the wound.
- Push down as hard as you can.
- Hold pressure to stop the bleeding. Continue pressure until relieved by medical responders.
- For Life Threatening Bleeding from an arm or leg, apply a tourniquet.
- Wrap the tourniquet around the bleeding extremity approximately 2 to 3 inches above the bleeding site. Do NOT place tourniquet onto a joint.
- Pull the free end of the tourniquet to make it as tight as possible and secure the free end.
- Twist or wind the windlass until bleeding stops.
- Secure the windlass to keep the tourniquet tight.
- Note the time the tourniquet was applied.
All Information brought to you by The Committee on Trauma. Stop the Bleed, Save a Life! www. bleedingcontrol.org