Responsible for prying people away from death's ledge, Marin County will soon receive the funds necessary to secure the purchase of five new emergency extraction devices.
According to Bay City News, Marin County received a $190,000 grant that will be used to purchase five extrication devices, commonly referred to by first responders as the "jaws of life.” More specifically, $80,000 of that grant, which comes from the California Office of Traffic Safety, will go directly to the Marin County Fire Department; the lump funds, themselves, are part of the NHTSA (National Highway Traffic Safety Administration) grant program.
Unlike older iterations of the life-saving tools, these newer ones that’ll soon be available to West Marin first responders are not only less heavy and boast a “better ergonomic design,” but will also help increase trauma survivability rates.
"This newer equipment is 50 percent lighter, safer, with better ergonomic design and is capable of extricating patients from advanced high-technology vehicles," Marin County Fire Department Battalion Bret McTigue said of the tool, commonly used to tear into wrecked vehicles, freeing the otherwise trapped victim (or victims) inside of them.
These updated extraction devices will help safeguard an injured person's “golden hour," described as the critical first 60 minutes after an accident where prompt medical treatment can greatly prevent death, during a traumatic incident.
"[These new extraction tools will allow] us to rescue victims faster, which ultimately increases their chances of survival,” McTigue added. “In many cases, even minutes without treatment can be a matter of life and death, which is why it is important to have reliable equipment that allows first responders to provide care as quickly as possible."
And, given the fact that the Marin County Fire Department has already responded to over 200 vehicle emergencies this year, 28 requiring the use of like-purposed extraction devices, the grant could well be responsible for saving dozens of lives.
The endowment was officially accepted by the Marin County Board of Supervisors last month on the 24th.
Image: Senior Airman Preston Webb, via U.S. Air Force