Tuesday, November 1, 2011

WFR Scenario for Fall Leadership 2011

Practice makes perfect, and that is exactly what our fall 2011 leadership students did this past weekend. The leadership class took part in a simulated emergency scenario, where every student had to put their Wilderness First Responder skills to use. The Wilderness First Responder, or WFR, is a serious certification required of nearly every outdoor professional, including our own staff here at Costa Rica Outward Bound.  Walking up the hill as darkness fell on the base campus, the group was confronted with a remote accident scenario involving two cars, four hysterical and injured passengers, numerous distracting bystanders as well as a severely injured and inebriated cyclist. All this was set to test the medical ability and personal nerves of our WFR students. The students were required to immediately set to work, managing a hectic situation that tested everyone’s knowledge of medical scenarios as well as their ability to act under pressure. After assessing the situation, students went to work treating major injuries, deciding which people were the priorities for evacuation, as well as managing a slew of distractions designed to prevent them from accomplishing their tasks.

In our de-brief, many students commented on how even though a simulated emergency, the scope of the accident, the stress of managing so many different injuries and the numerous distractions made it difficult for some to focus. Furthermore, having to evacuate several victims proved to be a difficult task, as multiple trips up and down the hill is enough to make the most athletic person require their own medical attention. In all, the scenario was a great opportunity to practice skills as well as experience a sample of the stress one can feel in the field!

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