KINGSTON, R.I. — Sept. 4, 2019 — All 28 active members of the University of Rhode Island Police Department were recently certified in Stop the Bleed training, aimed at preventing life-threatening bleeding due to injury. Uncontrolled bleeding is the most preventable cause of death from trauma, according to the national Stop the Bleed campaign.
While medical emergencies with serious bleeding on the University of Rhode Island campuses are uncommon, officials believe that the training could someday save lives. The training could also make a critical difference in the instance of an active shooter situation on campus.
“The unfortunate truth is that active shooter situations are continuing across our country and we need to be prepared,” said Sam Adams, director of URI’s Office of Emergency Management. Adams noted that URI was able to obtain Stop the Bleed kits as a grant through the Rhode Island Emergency Management Agency.
According to Maj. Michael Jagoda of the URI Police, following the completion of the training last month, all police officers now carry a personal tourniquet kit on their belts. In addition, officers are supplied with an extra kit and the supervisor has possession of a mass incident kit—in the form of a large red backpack—that carries emergency equipment including 15 tourniquets.
“The more people on campus who know how to control bleeding, the greater chance we have of saving a life,” said Jagoda. “By adding this specific subject matter to our existing active shooter training we are providing faculty, staff and students with one more tool to help them be prepared for any number of potential emergency situations.”
URI has provided its officers, as well as those in local police departments and at other universities, with active shooter training for a number of years. Following the Parkland, Florida shooting that occurred in 2018, URI police increased active shooter trainings available to faculty, staff and students. These training sessions, which are in high demand, will now include a segment on Stop the Bleed training. The next sessions offered to the URI community are planned for mid- to late-September. Specific dates will be announced once the fall semester is underway.
“We are an active campus community. In addition to preparing for the worst, in terms of active shooter situations, we also have construction ongoing at any given time, the potential for serious car accidents, and many other incidents that could result in significant bleeding injuries. These kits will be a key part of our overall emergency response strategy,” said Jagoda.
According to Adams, the training was made possible with the assistance of Francesco Capaldi, Sr., from South Kingston EMS, who helped train URI’s first responders; and the Rhode Island Emergency Management Agency, which supplied personal equipment for officers as well as the mass casualty kit.
During URI’s recent annual Public Safety Awards ceremony, eleven individuals were honored including three who were recognized for their work in developing and executing the Stop the Bleed initiative at URI. Capaldi, URI Police Officer Paul Hanrahan and Campus Preparedness Officer Robert Lloyd were commended for their work in planning, coordinating, and implementing the training at URI.