In the middle of nowhere.

How long will it take you to get an ambulance? What if the ambulance was for you? Most of you probably keep some sort of medical bag in your patrol car, but many don’t have anything on you for your personal medical aid. If you’re in a bad spot, having a few key medical tools can make a difference in your life expectancy. I know how much equipment is lugged around on the average cop duty belt.

For those of you in big cities, you’re usually able to get EMS on scene within 10 minutes. If the fight’s in the form of a SWAT call, then you at least might have a tactical medic with you; but remember it doesn’t take long to bleed out when you’re losing blood from critical areas. Time is essential, and for the majority working in the middle of nowhere on agencies of 25 officers or less (that’s 85 percent of you), backup can be far away — EMS even further.

Here in the Oregon outback our officers have to be prepared for it all. If you look in one of their vehicles you’ll see everything for any type of emergency, and they have to be prepared to handle it all on their own.

Having the gear in your car to use on others is one thing; what if you’re hurt and unable to get to your gear? Do you have simple medical gear on you to address your own injuries? Is the gear in a spot you can get to quickly? Can you apply medical aid to yourself?