Saturday, February 5, 2011

The Presidents Cup

Anyone that has been to a ski hill will recognize the first responders to injury as the Ski Patrol. But what most don't know(including me!), is that there is more to them then meets the eye. Talking with Linda Shin, the Media Rep for the Canadian Ski Patrol, the are "a four season" safety group. They are involved in many events, from the local Underwear Affair, to various Cancer marathons, and even what would be the total opposite to their ski duties, they support the volleyball compitions at Ahsbridges Bay.

To help promote all that they do, the Ski Patrol held the Presidents Cup in Yonge Dundas Square. Teams of three from the Central Region of the Ski Patrol were givin various scenarios, and were watched and marked to see how they did. At the request of the Ski Patrol, Toronto EMS was also invited to participate.

The Central Region holds their event, leading to the Provincial event, which eventually leads to the National Event, to be held in Winnipeg from May 26 to 29, 2011.

Linda explained that the members are trained to a level just below a paramedic, and as first responders, they triage the injuries, prepare the victims for transport, and can also provide the transport themselves, unlike many medics, who simply wait for the ambulance to arrive. Considering how important time can be in serious injuries, this could be the difference between life and death.

Yonge Dundas was separated into different scenario areas, which included a car accident, a bike injury, people falling, and people with various injuries from broken bones to heart attacks. Also, some "fun" scenarios were provided, such as one in which the teams attempted to place every bandage they carry on one victim, or the blindfold test to see if they can properly assemble a transport sled!

In the accident scenario, there are two victims in a car accident, which also includes two pedistrians hit by the car. For the purpose of the test, the "driver" was presented with no vitals present, so the team quickly had to triage all the rest of the victims, and prepare for the arrival of the ambulance.

Once it arrived, the team helped secure one of the injured,

before waiting for an additional ambulance to arrive for the other victims.

In this "fun" scenario, the team is blindfolded and left to assemble the sled used to transport victims off of the ski hill.

Another fun scenario was to use all the bandages provided to a Ski Patrol member, and apply them to a "victim".

During all the events, the members are carefully evaluated to ensure they are following the standard procedures, and to provide a final grade, to pick the ultimate team winners.

I must say I was really impressed with all the members. Everyone at the event was very kind, and all had great stories to tell, and were eager to let people know what they do. From the team members all the way up to the President, the Ski Patrol members put on a great show!

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