Performing a successful technical rescue requires many elements: patience and skill, teamwork and training, the right equipment and, crucially, the knowledge and confidence to use it.
Failure to deliver on any one of these things could easily turn a rescue into recovery, so crews on rope rescues, working in confined spaces or on domestic extrication must be fully prepared for any eventuality.
To help crews perform to the very best of their ability, 3ET has sourced a new technical stretcher designed specifically for rescue operations involving vertical or horizontal lifts.
The MedSled MS36VLRH Vertical Lift Rescue Stretcher (MedSled VLR) is compact and lightweight, yet has been developed to withstand heavy-duty, demanding rescue conditions. Designed in conjunction with the US Military and tested by both the US Military and Canadian Search and Rescue, it is now used by the US Military Special Forces, several North American Coastguards and the USA Fire Service. In trials for the National Ambulance Resilience Unit in the UK, it was the top-performing stretcher for patient extrication.
The MedSled VLR was developed for use in the extraction of casualties with extreme lower body injuries or amputations, to keep pressure off the lower extremities during a vertical lift. This is achieved with the addition of a built-in patient body harness and load-bearing perimeter tether, both of which help to prevent body-weight transfer. This makes it useful equipment for moving any patient in an emergency, especially where time is of the essence.
Unique casualty body harness
Unlike on other rescue stretchers, the harness on the MedSled VLR is built into the body of the stretcher, allowing the patient to be secured very quickly. Straps are pulled up around the crutch before being reattached at shoulder level to the same vertical hoisting point as the main stretcher body.
This means in a vertical lift or high-angle rescue the patient is suspended independently to the stretcher. The patient’s weight is prevented from being transferred downwards, onto their legs or arms, allowing casualties with limb trauma to be held securely without placing pressure on the injury. A medical longboard or scoop stretcher can be independently secured in a similar way, by threading the harness straps through the openings. The harness also provides stability when moving small adults, amputees or paediatric patients in a horizontal lift.
Patented perimeter tether
MedSled’s patented perimeter tether provides further stability and patient security. Designed as a built-in ‘closed loop’ system, the tethers are integrated to form a net that surrounds the casualty, holding them securely whilst restricting movement. There are no grommet holes to create weak points in the plastic body and the straps, tethers and handles are not sewn into the sled, meaning they can be easily removed for cleaning, or replaced as needed.
This pre-assembled system also means there is no need to loop ropes onto the body, allowing for an immediate vertical lift via the locking Delta Maillon at the head end of the stretcher.
Fast and efficient
In addition to the stability and security benefits, the integrated harness and perimeter tether bring other advantages. Fewer parts make it easier to use and mean the MedSled VLR system can be deployed instantly, allowing for extrication in seconds even in poor visibility or more extreme conditions.
For more information, go to www.3ET.co.uk