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Thread: Helmet removal...after the get-off

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    Outlander Omega Man's Avatar
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    Helmet removal...after the get-off

    Has anyone considered helmet removal after the get-off (crash) ? There are some inflatable systems which at first glance look real good but the first responders would have to be familiar with the system. I was looking at the hat/liner system- http://stores.sportbiketrackgear.com/Detail.bok?no=6075 didn't look to bad. Anybody with experience? Gary
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    Back in the Saddle mcmxcivrs's Avatar
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    I'd be more concerned about the responders knowing how to properly use that item, or worse, some unskilled bystander deciding that they could use it to remove the helmet.

    Helmet removal is a standard skill that is taught to emergency responders and is not so difficult when you know how to do it right. I does require two people to do, one to stabilze the patients c-spine, the other to remove the helmet. Typically, unless the situation is life threatening, the need to remove the helmet is not the highest priority anyway, it's usually left until the assessment and stabilization are done or well under way.
    Last edited by MCMXCIVRS; 12-05-2010 at 09:26 PM.
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    Unfunded content provider tommcgee's Avatar
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    I've seen some stickers alerting first responders about the possible danger in helmet removal. (Don't recall where I saw them...)
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    Registered User froggy's Avatar
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    I usually wear my modular helmet which is easier to remove after a crash.I have not had a crash bad enough to involve paramedics,but being a BEEMER rider,I am required to have all safety devises in place...helmet-check,armor pants and jacket-check,armor gloves-check,riding boots-check,air bags front rear and sides-check check and check.
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    Registered User greenwald's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MCMXCIVRS View Post
    I'd be more concerned about the responders knowing how to properly use that item, or worse, some unskilled bystander deciding that they could use it to remove the helmet.

    Helmet removal is a standard skill that is taught to emergency responders and is not so difficult when you know how to do it right. I does require two people to do, one to stabilze the patients c-spine, the other to remove the helmet. Typically, unless the situation is life threatening, the need to remove the helmet is not the highest priority anyway, it's usually left until the assessment and stabilization are done or well under way.
    Good advice in this previous post.

    I was certified an EMT since 1976, rode as an ambulance attendant for 15 years and did 11 years as an ER technician at Memorial Medical Center (Sheboygan, WI) on the 'graveyard' shift.

    Unless my initial assessment from the neck up indicated an altered level of consciousness, unequal pupils, compromised airway, skull trauma, bleeding out from a head wound or cerebrospinal fluid coming from an ear (both can be assessed by a finger sweep inside a worn helmet), we would leave the helmet in place for prompt transport, securing the patient's head to a longboard and not disturbing C-spine alignment.
    Last edited by Greenwald; 12-06-2010 at 01:40 PM.
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    Polarbear Polarbear's Avatar
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    Good points:)

    I suspect a lot of helmets would have to come off too, to establish if a person is breathing? I'm not a rescue person, just asking. I've had a bad head injury and the helmet would probably be more comfy on those backboards. Those guys straped me to a board, head injury and all. It hurt! Good thing they did, as I went into shock, needed oxygen and shook uncontrolably. Won't forget that day. Not m/c related, my injury. A fall from a rooftop. Thank you, Paramedics out there in the world...My Daughter today is one too. Randy

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    Registered User greenwald's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Polarbear View Post
    I suspect a lot of helmets would have to come off too, to establish if a person is breathing? I'm not a rescue person, just asking. I've had a bad head injury and the helmet would probably be more comfy on those backboards. Those guys straped me to a board, head injury and all. It hurt! Good thing they did, as I went into shock, needed oxygen and shook uncontrolably. Won't forget that day. Not m/c related, my injury. A fall from a rooftop. Thank you, Paramedics out there in the world...My Daughter today is one too. Randy
    Glad you came out OK on the other end of your "up on the rooftop" experience!

    Helmet removal is problematical. By that, I mean different circumstances and mechanisms of injury dictate different approaches by EMS.

    Conscious patients w/o altered levels of consciousness - often helmet left in place when cervical injury suspected. Best removed in the ER, after x-rays and where more hands are available and complications can be managed.

    However, should airway issues (inlcuding potential vomitting) become a concern, the helmet needs to be off, for example, to initiate a modified jaw thrust (a way to open the airway for breathing assistance with minimal disturbance of the C-spine).

    My hat ( or helmet ) is off to your daughter for being motivated to be trained to paramedic standards and be of help to those in need. We need more like her.

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    Registered User rmarkr's Avatar
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    To change the subject a bit;
    Where or how would and EMT responder look for one's I.C.E. (in case of emergency) info? If I had an ICE file on my phone, or on a memory card in my sleeve pocket, or a written note on my chin strap, would it be found? - assuming I'm unresponsive.
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    Dee G flymymbz's Avatar
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    I wonder, how many EMT/paramedics/ER docs/nurses who are non riders, can figure out how to open all the different modular helmets? A full face is a no brainer, cut the strap (if needed) and remove.

    But I've noticed that with modular helmets, there isn't a 'standard' in mechanisms. Caberg is different than Nolan is different than Schuberth is different than Shoei. (Those are the modulars in the house, can't comment on any others).

    Hmm... I may ask some of them EMT & fire dudes that I work with if they are familiar with the different helmets.
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    Registered User kgadley01's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by tommcgee View Post
    I've seen some stickers alerting first responders about the possible danger in helmet removal. (Don't recall where I saw them...)
    I think this is the sticker your talking about. We got them at a Safety Booth in Daytona.
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    Registered User greenwald's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by flymymbz View Post
    I wonder, how many EMT/paramedics/ER docs/nurses who are non riders, can figure out how to open all the different modular helmets? A full face is a no brainer, cut the strap (if needed) and remove.

    But I've noticed that with modular helmets, there isn't a 'standard' in mechanisms. Caberg is different than Nolan is different than Schuberth is different than Shoei. (Those are the modulars in the house, can't comment on any others).

    Hmm... I may ask some of them EMT & fire dudes that I work with if they are familiar with the different helmets.
    You raise excellent points. Here's a suggestion for chartered clubs this winter:

    Schedule a meeting when you can invite the local ambulance crew to attend for the evening. Discuss with them your concerns as riders, and learn from their demo's how helmets are properly removed (you may need to do this yourself someday on a lonely road for your buddy/passenger!).

    The ambulance crew can then take back to the shop your comments about ICE (In Case of Emergency) and where to look for it, as rmarkr brought up in an earlier post.

    Could be a Win-Win afternoon/evening for both of you!
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  12. #12
    Amma Holly's Avatar
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    and someone on another thread mentioned donating used helmets to your local first responders to use in their training. I thought it was an excellent idea and have been passing it along.

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    Dee G flymymbz's Avatar
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    Well, I had a quick chat with one of our fire dudes today. He also rides, so is familiar with modulars. He did mention, though, that unless they absolutely MUST remove a helmet to save someones life, it stays on until the rider gets to the ER.

    But he did say that most of the guys probably wouldn't have a clue how to open one up (just lift the facepiece, not remove the whole thing). I did kinda mention that if they needed to intubate, they better know how to open the stupid thing.

    So I offered to bring our helmets to the stations and let them look and practice. I may even get a hold of the Honda dealer to see if we could maybe borrow one or two of the display modulars. he said he'd bring it up with the Captain and let me know. If this works out, I will offer to do this at some of the other fire districts that we work with (two counties, seven fire districts each plus ambulance co's)

    With all the awesome mountain roads and countless miles of USFS trails out here, I think it might be a good thing.
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    Tourmeister gr8ridn2's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by flymymbz View Post
    Well, I had a quick chat with one of our fire dudes today. He also rides, so is familiar with modulars. He did mention, though, that unless they absolutely MUST remove a helmet to save someones life, it stays on until the rider gets to the ER.

    But he did say that most of the guys probably wouldn't have a clue how to open one up (just lift the facepiece, not remove the whole thing). I did kinda mention that if they needed to intubate, they better know how to open the stupid thing.

    So I offered to bring our helmets to the stations and let them look and practice. I may even get a hold of the Honda dealer to see if we could maybe borrow one or two of the display modulars. he said he'd bring it up with the Captain and let me know. If this works out, I will offer to do this at some of the other fire districts that we work with (two counties, seven fire districts each plus ambulance co's)

    With all the awesome mountain roads and countless miles of USFS trails out here, I think it might be a good thing.
    This is an excellent idea. I will contact my local fire stations and do the same. If more members do the same perhaps all of us will be part of the solution and maybe save someone one day.
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    Out of curiosity and not putting any plugs in for this company.

    Has anyone else taken the courses offered by Accident Scene Management Inc. in Wisconsin.

    They have two or three different classes that teach the basics on caring for victims.

    The advanced course goes into helmet removal and the reasons why you would do so. Like so may other classes they are time limited so the information covers the basics and gives you a base to grow from if you desire.

    The owners are riders and have taylored these classes towards MC type injuries.

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