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5 First Aid Tips for Boaties

5 First Aid Tips for Boaties


1. Have a good first aid kit

You are required by law to have a WHS-compliant first aid kit on any vessel. The larger the boat, the more supplies are required.  However, we have jotted down a few things to help get the ball rolling on some of the most used first aid items.

> Water proof container to protect your first aid kit

> Tweezers for removing splinters or hooks

> Crepe bandages (x2) for supporting injuries

> Wound dressings/pads to attend to gashes, cuts and scratches

> Antiseptic cream to treat wounds or bites

> Instant cold pack – snap pack for relief on wounds or injuries

> Latex gloves to use when dressing a wound to prevent infection

> Premium plastic strips for small wounds

> Safety pins to secure bandages

It is also suggested, if you spend a lot of time out on the water for long trips, to have an emergency thermal blanket and lots of bottles of water for both hydration and cleaning wounds if needed.


2. Know your passengers. Be aware of any existing sicknesses and what to do for them if they have a turn.


3. Know where to place a sick or injured passenger in your boat when transporting. Usually, the back of the boat is the most stable, so get them in apposition of comfort and go easy on the speed.


4. Know where you are for marine rescue. Download the app Emergency+ on your smart phone. It will tell you where you are with GPS coordinates. (This is a national app developed by Australia’s emergency services and their Government and industry partners.)


5. Complete a first aid course. This will teach you how to do everything required to look after your patients on board. There’s no point having a first aid if you’re not sure how to use it or what to use it for.


Scott Whimpey is the director of First Aid Accident & Emergency, offering a variety of first aid courses on the Gold Coast. He is a first aid expert and a boating enthusiast. (