BLOG: TECC training could help you save a life - | WBTV Charlotte

BLOG: TECC training could help you save a life

US Marines apply a tourniquet during a training exercise. (Photo: US Navy) US Marines apply a tourniquet during a training exercise. (Photo: US Navy)

Community preparedness. We hear those words quite frequently nowadays.  We're always being told to prepare against everything from ISIS to natural disasters.

Realistically though, most of us are more likely to have to deal with someone who accidentally gets hurt at home or in the office, and many of us have come upon traffic accidents, house fires, etc.  Understanding that no one is against being prepared, what if there were one type of community preparedness that would help us in all situations?  Now there is.  And it's called Tactical Emergency Casualty Care or TECC.

You've probably never heard of it before because it's something relatively new.  And it's something that's sweeping the nation.

Few good things if any come from war, but if we are to learn from our national events, then those involved in combat medicine in war zones brought back to the United States the best of the best in medical care for traumatic injuries.  What originally began as Tactical Combat Casualty Care (TCCC), emergency medical education reserved for those who serve in the military and overseas, has now taken on a decidedly "civilian" spin.  Lessons that the military medical community began learning in 1991 have now, 25 years later, been packaged for presentation to the American public in a way that we can all understand and practice.

Let me take you back to a fateful day in April of 2013.  The city: Boston.  The event: the end of a marathon.  Two explosions, many casualties.  Who did we see, on those first news photos released, rendering aid to the victims? Those who were in a position to render immediate aid were our fellow citizens, spectators who originally just showed up to support the event.  Soon, they were joined in their rescue efforts by police officers, firefighters, EMS personnel and then doctors and nurses from area hospitals.  It all happened right there on the sidewalks of one of America's most storied cities, people all working together to stop the bleeding.

Those scenes helped drive home the need in 2015 to launch a White House initiative titled "Stop the Bleed." Part of that initiative was guidance from the Department of Homeland Security to begin a massive roll-out of a kind of emergency medical training that can be taken into homes, businesses, schools, community organizations and to our first responders (police, fire, medical). 

Why?  Because we have learned that in the event of an emergency, either natural or man made, big or small, we are all going to have to join together to save lives. That is Tactical Emergency Casualty Care or TECC. 

This training is now available in our community. TECC focuses on the three preventable causes of traumatic death: extremity bleeding, airway obstructions and chest cavity punctures.  three things are taught:  How to use a tourniquet, how to move someone on their side so their airway is not blocked, and how to seal a wound in the chest area.  Of course, the training can go much more in depth depending upon the time allotted to the instructor.  

here is the great part in my opinion... since TECC is not designed to necessarily be taught as a stand-alone course, it is perfect as an addition to any meeting, conference or organized gathering.  If you can give the instructor just 30 minutes, a base line of knowledge can be shared to save lives. I have seen training offered that ranges from 30 minutes to 16 hours.

TECC is not meant to replace first aid/CPR and AED training.  It is meant to enhance everyone's skills, knowledge and abilities for living in today's society. 

For more information, visit the website for the Committee on Tactical Emergency Casualty Care.   

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Karl de la Guerra, PPS, CLSS

Don't let the bad guys win. Karl de la Guerra is WBTV's expert on personal security. He has spent the past 36 years in the protective services industry, with experience in the U.S. military, law enforcement, and international corporate security. For more information, visit
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