After introductions are through and I explain the history of TCCC the first thing I talk about is the three phases of TCCC. And the first one is Care Under Fire.
Care Under Fire is the phase that starts the moment you have a casualty to deal with. Whether you know it or not. Some people can get caught up in the moment and try to rush out to go treat their buddy, and that can get people killed very quickly.
Everything starts with returning fire. The best treatment you can provide your casualty at this time is fire superiority. This not only limits new injuries to your current casualty, but it limits the ability of the enemy to create new ones.
Once fire superiority is achieved, then we can advance towards our casualty and begin a visual blood sweep. We don’t have the time to dedicate to a full blood sweep with cutting clothes off so we just simply look for blood pooling and blood-soaked clothing. If we notice any we will apply a hasty tourniquet. A hasty tourniquet is high-and-tight and over the clothing. We apply them this way because we don’t know exactly where the bleeding is coming from but we know there is major bleeding.
Once we have applied hasty tourniquets to any major bleeding we see, we need to get off the “X”. We will move back to a more safe location (hopefully a pre-designated Casualty Collection Point or CCP). Once we have moved them we will reassess the tourniquet to make sure it didn’t come loose and start to cut away the clothing to figure out where the source of bleeding actually is. But that is no longer Care Under Fire and will be the topic of another article.
If you want to learn how to properly apply a hasty tourniquet and the rest of the TCCC phases, come out to class.
I still have IFAK’s in stock as well.
Stay safe out there.