Members of the Canadian Ski Patrol (CSP) on Prince Edward Island recently held their annual field day training session where their skills were put to the test during a very realistic full casualty simulation.
The simulations began with a mock chairlift evacuation at a downhill ski site, a person who appeared to be crushed between two cars, and the mock disasters continued from there. Other scenarios included a ski technician who cut her hand open, a cross-country runner suffering from hypothermia, an individual who lost a finger off while in diabetic shock, a cycling collision that left two patients with various injuries, and a young girl who was trying to find her mother, who was epileptic. The exercise saw about 25 patrollers tend to 12 patients almost simultaneously.
“As [the car scene] was going on, we then had somebody who had burned themselves (inside). Somebody raced outside to get help for the burn victim and tripped, giving themselves a concussion,” said Craig Taggart, a recruitment officer and instructor. “A few minutes after that, we had a person walking around who ate a cookie and went into anaphylactic shock.”
Recruits found the simulation training valuable and recognized the need for teamwork. Various comments from the recruits included:
“You can sit down and study it as much you want, but until you kind of have to do it fast and accurate in a real life situation that’s when you kind of everything starts to click.”
“It makes training feel a lot more real and gives you an eye opener for what you could actually run into, not only here but in everyday life too right.”
“Getting to do these scenarios really equips us for whenever we do come across a situation on the hill.”