WIFR: Mercyhealth and Other Health Systems Donate Tourniquets to Rockford Police

ROCKFORD, Ill (WIFR) — It would take three minutes to bleed to death if a femoral artery or vein was injured. Tourniquets are life-saving tools made to prevent those deaths.

“People can bleed to death even before the ambulance and fire department gets there,” says Mercyhealth associate EMS director Matt Smetana. “Empowering the law enforcement officers and giving them this training to be able to save their own lives, and save the lives of others is critically important in those first few minutes.”

Mercyhealth officials along with the other two hospital in town donated hundred of tourniquets to the Rockford Police Department, and offered a training session. With the rise of mass shootings across the nation, officers say knowing how to use these devices is critical.

“This is a life-saving tool that has been long overdue,” says community service officer Matthew Williams. “I think it’s important to know it when the time comes we need to be ready to act and be vigilant.”

The most important step is to stop the bleeding. Priorities should include calling out where you are injured, finding the source of blood flow and then using the tourniquet.

“It’s a time of need throughout the nation,” says Williams. “I’m happy that they’re jumping out to help the police.”

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