Muskegon County students complete 'Stop the Bleed' training

Stop the bleeding initiative

MUSKEGON COUNTY, MICH. - From shootings at outdoor concerts, to vehicles running over people on crowded sidewalks, it seems nearly every day there's what emergency workers call 'mass casualty events' happening somewhere.

It's why in 2015 the White House launched the Stop the Bleed initiative.

It's an effort to encourage regular people to become trained and equipped to help in a bleeding emergency before professional help arrives.

Around 300 high school students from around Muskegon County are finishing "Stop the Bleed" training at the Muskegon Area Career Tech Center.

The training is important because witnesses are nearly always first on the scene of an emergency.

Students worked to complete three hands-on training stations practicing life-saving procedures that could be required in their own homes or in their future careers.

"There is so much going on in the world right now," said Heather Ruffin, Trauma Program Manager Manager at Mercy Health Muskegon's Hackley Campus;

The skills Ruffin showed the students will be useful during any bleeding event.

"It could be an accident at home or an accident at the work place," said Holly Alway, Injury Prevention Manager at Mercy Health Muskegon.

In Muskegon County it takes an ambulance on average eight minutes to arrive.

"I mean seconds matter," said student Noah King.

Student Mary Cruz Lopez learned how to pack a wound. And she says now she's ready to help during an emergency with injuries. "If you actually see somebody you would want to help them," said Cruz Lopez.

"When you are talking about a bleeding injury if it is fairly significant a person can bleed out within three minutes," said Alway.

"Having somebody there on the scene that knows what to do, and is ready to take action is lifesaving."

And students say they don't want to be in situations where they have to use their training. "It would be really scary," said Morgan Erffmeyer.

But after a show of hands, all of the students committed to use the training if needed.  

"You just never know when you are going to need it," said Alway.

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