Keynsham bleed control kit could save lives

A POTENTIALLY life-saving bleed control kit has been installed outside Keynsham Civic Centre.

The kit, which is designed to control bleeding after someone suffers a traumatic injury, is one of 144 being installed on the side of existing HeartSafe defibrillators across Avon and Somerset.

The kits include trauma dressings and tourniquets to help manage bleeds as well as nitrile gloves, scissors, and a colour-coded instruction guide on what to use depending on where the injury is.

They are being installed in partnership with Avon and Somerset Police, NHS England South West and HeartSafe.

People should always call 999 and ask for an ambulance in an emergency, but these kits are designed to help in the moments immediately after a medical emergency until an ambulance or first responder arrives on scene.

Avon and Somerset force lead for knife crime, Chief Inspector Mike Vass, said: “We know we cannot police our way out of serious violence; it has to be a partnership approach, not just between us and our partners in health and social care, but also with members of our communities who can play a key part in helping us.

“We employ a number of different tactics to deal with knife crime and prevent it at the source, but in the unfortunate event that a person is seriously injured, we hope that these kits will go some way to preventing the tragic loss of life we’ve been seeing in our communities.”

Members of Avon and Somerset Police, HeartSafe, local councillors, and partners from the local Violence Reduction Partnership gathered to see the new kit installed and raise local awareness among residents of Keynsham.

Councillor Tim Ball, Bath & North East Somerset Council cabinet member for neighbourhood services, added: “We are happy to support this police initiative, However, we hope that no one ever has reason to use any of the kits.”

The installation complements work being carried out by the police to tackle knife crime, with weapon surrender bins installed across the region to encourage young people to safely discard of knives or weapons, as well as a number of educational workshops in secondary schools on the dangers of carrying a knife.

If you are concerned about someone you know carrying a knife, you can report it to Avon and Somerset Police by calling 101 or via their online form. Or you can also give information anonymously via Crimestoppers, either online or by calling 0800 555 111.

Avon and Somerset knife crime lead, Mike Vass, is pictured with local police officers