First aid basics – what to do immediately after an incident

The first few moments after an accident takes place or someone falls suddenly ill can be very frightening and confusing. It is natural to panic in these kinds of situations, but it is important to stay as calm as you can. This is why regular first aid training is a good idea, because it drills the important information into your brain so that you start using it without even thinking, even if you start to panic.

Following an accident or sudden illness, you need to:

  • Check that you are not in danger before helping anyone – your safety is just as important as the casualty’s and you also cannot help them if you also fall ill or get injured
  • Check that the casualty is not in any danger – only once they are in a safe place, out of harm’s way, can you start to provide assistance
  • Call the emergency services – if the person is seriously ill or injured, call 999 and ask for an ambulance. It is often a good idea to do this anyway, just in case someone is in a more serious condition than they appear.
  • Use your first aid skills – again, this is why first aid training is vital, so you can put a casualty into the recovery position, perform CPR and provide other assistance which could help to save a person’s life.