Schools across central New York are considering some of the safety initiatives proposed by the Onondaga School Safety Task Force. One is a simple training technique that could have saved lives in the Parkland, Florida school shooting.
A program called “Stop the Bleed” is one of the recommendations in the task force report. Onondaga County District Attorney Bill Fitzpatrick said including it was a no brainer after considering one fact.
"Four of the Parkland students bled to death, because no one was trained in how to assist them, and none of the EMT’s were allowed to go in," said Fitzpatrick.
Stop the Bleed is a program that teaches the basics of bleeding control through the use of pressure techniques, use of dressings, or the application of a tourniquet.
SUNY Oswego professor Jaclyn Schildkraut, an expert on school shootings and a member of the task force, said knowing how to apply pressure and a tourniquet could be useful in a school shooting situation when emergency personnel can’t get to victims quickly.
"If anything happens, minutes and seconds are very critical. So being able to stop the bleed and triage the situation as a civilian before the EMT’s get in is really, really important," said Schildkraut. "Those seconds can save a number of lives.”
Syracuse City School District teacher Michaela Clark says Stop the Bleed is something she would easily agree to.
"The Stop the Bleed training is free," said Clark. "And it’s wonderful training to have in general, not just for something like a school shooting. But a kitchen accident, a boating accident. Massive blood loss is something many people don’t know how to deal with, they don’t know how to stop it.”
The program is offered in central New York through Upstate Medical University’s Trauma Department.