You are much more likely to use first-aid gear than you are to use your gun. But those of us who carry a gun every day often overlook the need for a good trauma kit. I’m not talking about a “boo-boo kit” with Band-Aids and tweezers for pulling ticks. I’m talking about a kit that will allow you to stop serious bleeding to help stabilize a person before professional medical help arrives on the scene. Items you will need include compress bandages, tourniquets, chest seals, tampons (to put in bullet holes) and nitrile gloves.
Keep It Simple — and Get Training
I won’t tell you exactly what you must carry, but I will tell you that you should get training and carry something that will help you stop severe bleeding. There are any number of good kits, pouches, tourniquets and so much more. So pick some stuff and get training on how to use it. Remember, you won’t need a lot of this stuff. You are not setting up a field hospital. You are being prepared to treat one or maybe two people.
You see in the video that I mentioned buying at least one extra bandage so that you can open it. Seriously … do it. Keep a sealed one in your kit and open one so you know what it looks like and what you can expect when you pull it out to use it. The last thing you want is to be surprised or confused when you open a bandage and it doesn’t look the way you expected it to. It also helps to know how easy or difficult the packaging is to open. This is part of your training. Get comfortable with your gear.
Don’t Overlook Gloves
On the topic of nitrile gloves, pound for pound these are the most versatile items you can carry. They are light. They pack small. They protect you from blood-borne pathogens and, in a pinch, they can work as a field-expedient chest seal when covered with duct tape. So please, consider carrying nitrile gloves as part of your EDC kit.