Photos: (credit: Exmouth RNLI)
PR020718-1 RNLI Crew and lifeguards carry cliff faller with Exmouth Coastguard team
PR020718-2 RNLI Crew, Lifeguards and Exmouth Coastguard team assess spinal injury casualty on the beach
PR020718-3 RNLI Crew, Shore Crew and lifeguards with Sidmouth lifeboat Coxswain and Exmouth Coastguards rush to recover the mass casualties to the lifeboat station
PR020718-4 Exmouth RNLI Crew volunteers, lifeguards and coastguard team carry casualty to the lifeboat station from the mass rescue scenario
On 1 July, local emergency services were invited to Exmouth lifeboat station to take part in various scenarios, played by actors from Peninsula Pre-hospital Emergency Medicine team.
The morning was organised by Crew volunteer and emergency doctor, Chris Marsh with the intention of setting up moulages that combined services could be called to in our area for real. These included:
- An awkward patient on a yacht – hypoglycaemic diabetic.
- Spinal injury casualty extracted from a fishing boat on a stretcher in the survivor space of Shannon class lifeboat R and J Welburn.
- Patient with chest pain found on ramp, brought into station, collapses and goes into cardiac arrest. Defibrillator use.
- Teenager jumped off ramp into shallow water, suffered head injury and possible compressed spine injury.
- Cliff rescue – casualty fallen from cliff and found at bottom with open lower limb fracture.
- Unconscious drowning of baby found face-down at water’s edge.
- Mass casualty – boat aground and on fire on Pole Sands with six casualties. Recovery by D class lifeboat, with an ambulance delay back at station.
The six mini scenarios were co-ordinated by Lifeboat Medical Advisor, Dr Jane Aitken, Crew volunteer and Paramedic, James Searle and RNLI Lifeguard Supervisor, Tim Smart. In the break, Lifeboat Medical Advisor and Deputy Chair of the RNLI Medical Committee, Dr Peter Aitken summed up the importance of interagency learning.
Exmouth Rowing Club safety boat helm and Exmouth RNLI Deputy Launching Authority, Toby Lagus helped take the actors, dressed in wetsuits and old clothes to Pole Sands for the mock mass casualty rescue. He remained at the location until all actors were rescued. George Bearman II made two trips to recover the casualties, so Crew volunteers had to use their skills to assess and prioritise which casualties to recover back to the beach first. In a heavy downpour, combined agencies carried the actors in stretchers coming off the lifeboat and assisted the ‘walking-wounded’ to the lifeboat station to be re-assessed and treated by further emergency service personnel.
Dr Chris Marsh thanked everybody for taking part:
‘It was a very successful morning and I think everybody went away learning more about interagency working. We are looking to run sessions more regularly to refresh our collaborative skills. Thank you to everybody who took part.’
Agencies who attended the day included: Exmouth Coastguard Rescue Team, South West Ambulance Service Foundation Trust & their Hazardous Area Response Team (HART), Peninsula Pre-hospital Emergency Medicine, Sidmouth Lifeboat, RNLI south Devon lifeguards, as well as Lifeboat and Shore Crew volunteers from Exmouth lifeboat station.