–by Mary Helen Darah
PUBLICATION DATE: Sept 14, 2020
All American Karate in Sylvania provided a custom, proactive training session for members of the Sylvania Township Fire Department from Aug. 31 through Sept.2. The training for firefighters and paramedics was designed to teach various techniques to recognize, avoid, and when necessary, escape a potentially violent scene. Attendees also learned how to safely restrain a medically combative patient for treatment without harm to the patient or crew member.
Captain Jeffrey Bennett of the Sylvania Township Fire Department believes the training is vital to keeping the crews safe. “We arranged the classes to be proactive with training our team members,” he stated. “With the negative press the police have received over the past year, it opened our eyes to the potential harm that could come to crews at a scene. We want our crews to be prepared for situations that could cause harm to them or patients. Police often deal with people directly trying to harm them. In our case, we often deal with individuals who have medical conditions that don’t necessarily want to harm us but have the potential to do so.”
The training was a two-step process. “We broke down the training into two parts,” said Bennett. “The first part was held in the classroom where crew members learned how to recognize a potentially violent situation. The second session was a hands-on experience held at All American Karate. Our crews learned how to evade an attack and also how to properly restrain a medically compromised, combative patient. John Roberts, of All American Karate, has offered to teach additional classes this winter. He will show crew members skills such as how to break away from a hold and how to avoid a weapon (knife) attack. We feel it would be beneficial to include our office staff in the training to prevent attacks if someone were to come to the station.”
The crew members in attendance expressed gratitude for the training. Bennett said, “We had positive feedback from our crews. I have been in the EMS service for 30 years. I could have used the information I received from these classes throughout my entire career. The crews are very excited to return in the winter for additional training. Our goal is to keep our crew members safe while they safely assist those in need.”