NOLAN COUNTY, Texas (KTAB/KRBC) – Fire and tornado drills won’t be the only safety precautions students and teachers will be practicing in the next school year across Nolan County. Come the 2023-2024 term, students will also learn how to apply a tourniquet and dress a bullet wound.

Big Country Medical Reserve Corp member, Richard Acuna, stressed how crucial using a tourniquet can be.

“Tourniquets save lives, and so, if we could train someone to just slip on a tourniquet, learn how to tighten it up, how to apply it and stop the bleed right there, we stop the bleed, we save a life,” illustrated Acuna.

House Bill 496, which went into effect at the beginning of 2020, is the Texas state law that requires independent school districts and charter schools to place bleeding control kits in schools, and train certain staff members on how to stop a bleed. Members of the Big Country Medical Reserve Corp in Sweetwater decided placing one kit in each school was not enough.

“We thought if one kit is that much safer, why not put one in every class? And no one wants to think about the ‘if,’ but that’s precisely where this project came from. The big ‘if’ in this case is a mass shooting event,” Nolan County Public Health Emergency Preparedness Coordinator, Mitch Moore explained.

The county said it plans to raise the funds to provide a kit for every single classroom across all four school districts in Nolan County. That will be approximately 500 kits, each costing $60.

Once kits are placed in each classroom, members of the Big Country Medical Reserve Corp, along with Sweetwater fire fighters, will train all staff members and the student body on how to apply a tourniquet and use all of the supplies in the kit. That even includes writing the time the tourniquet was applied so that when paramedics arrive, they are able to know exactly how long the bleeding has been stopped.

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