How to treat a gunshot wound until EMS arrives

A person could bleed out in 5 minutes if shot in certain parts of the body.
WSMV4's Michael Warrick reports.
Published: Apr. 12, 2023 at 7:37 PM EDT
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NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WSMV) - With heightened anxiety around mass shootings, one local security team is hoping to instill confidence in the public by offering training classes for active shooter situations and first aid.

Within the last three weeks, a collective 11 lives were taken by mass shooters in two separate incidents in Nashville and Louisville.

Clancy Fraser, owner of RCF Enterprises Security Services, says he has seen a spike in calls from businesses, churches and schools interested in increasing their security.

“The statistics are staggering about how much of this violence is going on,” Fraser said. “Everybody is concerned about their safety; churches, schools and businesses.”

Clancy says the biggest concern after someone is shot is the threat of them bleeding out. The human body contains about 1.5 gallons of blood and, depending on where they are shot, they can bleed out in less than five minutes. The most important thing, Clancy says, is finding ways to stop the bleeding with whatever fabric or towel you can find. Apply firm, consistent pressure.

“This person next to you is maybe seriously injured so you have to adapt, you have to adapt with what you have, and it may be a towel, or paper towels, or even a T-shirt. What we have to do is control that bleeding, do direct pressure on that wound. Do the best you can do, press down hard, stop that bleeding,” Clancy said.

In an active shooter situation the likelihood of having access to a medical kit is low. Every day items like plastic bags can be used as a barrier between your hands, fabric and wound.

RCF Enterprises provides uniformed security officers and plain clothes executive security. They also offer training classes for executive protection, CPR, AED, First Aid, as well as active shooter, workplace violence and disaster training.

“That’s what I’ve been busy with the last two weeks is helping people implement those plans because they do see the weakness in their security or they don’t have any at all,” Clancy said.

You can reach RCF Enterprises for information.