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The Combat Application Tourniquet (C-A-T) was developed by the U.S. military to provide soldiers with a small and effective tourniquet in field combat situations. The unit utilizes a windlass rod with a locking mechanism and can be self-applied. Due to its effectiveness, the C-A-T has been adopted by military and emergency personnel all over the world.
The C-A-T is a true one-handed tourniquet, proven to be 100% effective by the U.S. Army’s Institute of Surgical Research. Tests prove that the C-A-T completely occludes an extremity blood flow in the event of a traumatic wound with significant hemorrhage.
US troops deployed to hot war zones around the globe, like Iraq and Afghanistan, wear the C-A-T on their limbs, ready to activate in case of a massive bleeding injury, caused by an encounter with hostiles or an IED.
Click the image below to watch the video:
How to Use the C-A-T Tourniquet
When should we actually use the C-A-T?
Even though the tourniquet is a life saver, it’s also a last resort since using it will completely cut the blood circulation to the limb – after about 111 minutes there’s a much higher chance of losing that limb.
Before using the C-A-T, we need to try and stop the bleeding by applying direct pressure to the wound – you can use either a gauze or a triangular bandage (the Israeli bandage works great in most cases). But if the bleeding is too massive and continues despite that, you’ll have to make a judgement call and may need to resort to using the tourniquet.
How to apply the C-A-T to an arm:
How to apply the C-A-T to a leg:
Follow the same instructions as the arm, but make sure the strap’s end goes outwards from the body (the rod should be placed so you can easily reach it), so the other leg won’t be an obstacle.
How to fold the C-A-T for EDC carry:
To Sum Up:
The C-A-T is a proven, 100% effective self-applying tourniquet, and has saved countless lives all over the world. Make sure each person in your team has a C-A-T in their EDC first aid kit and take a few minutes to practice applying it as soon as possible (don’t tighten it completely when practicing), since you don’t want your first time using it to be during an emergency. Use the C-A-T as a last resort only if you can’t stop the bleeding in any other way. As soon as you apply the C-A-T, write the time and date and call for help. Always remember that being prepared saves lives!
Do YOU and your team have a C-A-T in your EDC first aid kit?
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Have you ever heard of climbing a tree to escape a bear attack? Maybe rubbing your hands together for warmth when it’s cold? Jumping into a lake to escape from bees or even sucking the venom out of a snake bite – there are plenty of survival myths that we grew up on or saw in movies or tv shows, that are totally wrong and even dangerous. In the next post we’ll talk about 5 popular survival myths that just might kill you!
I can’t wait to share all of this with you,
So until then – Stay Safe!!
Your friend always,