Beauty and the Bike by Richard Grassick, Beatrix Wupperman, Sabine Bungert, Phil

By Richard Grassick, Beatrix Wupperman, Sabine Bungert, Phil Dixon

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You can help maintain an open airway for a casualty in the supine position if you dig a shallow hole beneath a casualty's head and gently lower the head into the depression. There are several exceptions to the horizontal positioning requirement. Casualties suffering heart attacks, asthma attacks, or pulmonary barotrauma have difficulty breathing when lying down. If casualties complain about breathing difficulties, allow them to find positions that are comfortable for them. Comfortable positions may be sitting or semireclined.

You do not want casualties to become chilled or overheated. Shade a person lying in the hot sun. Cover a casualty when the air temperature is cool or when wind makes a wet diver cold. Space blankets are small, convenient, and are particularly effective for diving first aid. When the surfaces beneath injured divers are cold, place insulation beneath casualties unless you suspect a neck or back injury. Whenever possible, place twice as much insulation beneath a casualty as you put on top. Progressive shock can lead to circulatory collapse and death.

Provide first aid for shock. 20. Monitor and reassure the casualty until EMS arrives.  Position a backboard beneath the casualty.  Have a second rescuer grasp the top of the casualty's armpits (using the first two fingers only) and stabilize the head between his or her arms.  Position and secure the casualty to the board. vide further care. If you do not have a backboard, keep moving forward while holding the casualty and giving reassurance. Do your best to minimize neck and back movement while summoning assistance.

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