Tuesday, July 19, 2011

RTE filming improvised stretchers

   Over the past couple of weeks, Aebhric has been filming for the RTE kids programme Elev8. One of the 3.5 minute episodes was on how to make a stretcher in the wilderness. We had six kids ages around 10-12 who were broken down into two teams of three.
   My challenge for them was to build an improvised litter or stretcher out of wood harvested from the wilderness.

   Since they were young, I went out and found the proper poles and cross pieces for them. With all of the young cedar and birch trees available it was easy work. I made enough for two stretchers.
   This skill is not really practised enough. It is something that I rarely ask my own WFR or REMT students to do. It is simple enough and looked like this.

  This skill is important enough that one should construct an improvised ladder at least once a year to keep in practise. The lashings were taken from cut up tee shirts. The kids designed and constructed the stretchers. They were a bit flimsy but they worked.
   The final test was to put one of the kids on the stretcher and carry them for about 20 metres. Both kits worked out well. I think the kids learned something and more importantly I hope that the kids and adults who watch Elev8 will learn this technique as well.

This episode will be found on the RTE iPlayer under the Elev8 show.

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