Plan for the worst and hope for the best!
As a hunter I am often in very isolated places with very limited or no services at all. When you venture into places like this you need to take responsibility for yourself and those that accompany you. The luxury of having an abundance of emergency services available to pick up the pieces of one of your bad decisions has long left you before you hit the dirt trails.
Although shooting in general is statistically a very safe sport with fewer recorded injuries than say tennis, when things go wrong, they can go very wrong and an accident could result in death. Although shooting is a very safe sport, accidents do still happen as in this story https://tacmedaustralia.com.au/blogs/tacmed/spear-wound-to-the-leg-whilst-pig-hunting.
For this reason when I go hunting I always carry a trauma kit on my person (normally in my cargo pants pocket) and I have a secondary kit in the glove box of the vehicle for easy access to any member of my hunting group.
It is important to not only have a trauma kit but also know how to use it. Many civilian first aid providers do not teach the use of some of the equipment within my trauma kit such as the tourniquet. (with exception to surf lifesaving Queensland who I believe are or are intending to teach the tourniquet in their first aid course.) For this reason, you may need to attend a first aid provider such as TacMed Australia or at the very least self-study on the use of your trauma equipment. (Link in our free resources section of www.hssa.club page to combat causality care which could help with self-study)
Trauma First aid is mainly concentrating on life threating bleeding and airway obstruction. My personal trauma first aid kit mainly focuses on life threating bleeding due to the nature of injury I am most likely to encounter whilst hunting and due the availability of training regarding trauma related airway care.
As I see the major trauma injury concern for hunters would be a gunshot wound causing life threating bleeding with a secondary concern of large falls or some form of impalement. For this reason, my personal trauma kit has many bleed control options such as a tourniquet, quick clot hemostatic agent, Packing gauze, Israeli bandages, compressing bandages and wound pads, triangle bandage, emergency blanket and chest seals. As I am not a first aid instructor, I will not explain the uses of this equipment, but I will strongly advise you to undertake first aid training by a qualified instructor.
With this equipment I should be able to stabilise a patient until I can get them to help or help can get to them.
This blog was written to encourage you to carry a trauma kit whilst you are hunting and to obtain professional first aid and trauma training. Take some time to reflect…. Would you be able to treat a gun shot wound while you are hunting? Who could you lose to such an injury if the worst was ever to happen?