The over-riding procedure for dealing with accidents and illness, whether major or minor would a ‘SALTAPS’, this process is defined below.
S – Did you see it happen?
A – Ask what happened?
L – Look & assess the extent of the injury
T – Touch the area affected, look to if it is giving off heat as this could identify the injured area, for example a muscle strain.
A – Active, ask the injured party if they can move the injured part
P – Passive, ask they to try some gentle stretching or manipulation of the injured area.
S – Strength, ask them if they can carry on, can they put their weight on the injury.
Examples scenarios for putting this process in to action can be seen below
An adult player suffers a minor injury, in this example a cut to the leg.
- Remove player from field of play to assess the injury applying the ‘SALTAPS’ process.
- Clean the wound, stop the bleeding and apply dressing.
- Complete incident report form.
An adult player suffers a major injury, in this example a broken leg.
- Remain calm.
- Stop game to assess the injury applying the ‘SALTAPS’ process, however the extent of the injury would be identified at the either the S, A or L stage of the process. This would negate the need proceed any further.
- Call for the emergency services, applying the L.I.O.N.E.L system. Provide the location (identifying any access problems), the type of injury, is any other services required, the number of casualties, the extent of the injury and then repeat the location.
- Keep the injured player warm and as comfortable as possible until the emergency services arrive to take control of the situation. Keeping watch for any signs of shock, dizziness or vomiting. If the player is lying on their back and begins to feel sick it maybe advisable to move them into the recovery position, on the basis that nobody ever died of a broken leg but if they are sick lying on their back the danger of hypoxia is high.
- Advise the other players to return to the dressing rooms until emergency services have dealt with the removal of the player from the field.
- Either assign a colleague or accompany the player to hospital and inform immediate family of situation.
- Complete incident report form and feedback to the appropriate person at the club your feedback on the procedure to see if there is anything that could be improved in case of similar incidents occurring in the future.
- Make call later in day or evening to enquire about the player and his condition.
A child player becomes ill, in this example vomiting.
- Stop the game to remove player from field of play and apply ‘SALTAPS’. It will in this instance not be necessary to do anymore than to ask them how they are feeling and keep them comfortable and warm. With any kind of vomiting the danger is hypoxia; as such there is a need to be mindful of any dizziness or nausea. If the is the case get child into the recovery position and call the emergency services.
- Call parents, if they are not at the game to inform they of situation. If there are no signs of dizziness or nausea, ask them if they would collect the player. If there is a need to call the emergency services, let them know once the emergency services have arrived and reassure them that the situation is under control.
- Assign another parent or ask the opposition coach to keep the other team members supervised if there is a need to stop the game.
- Complete an incident report.
- Make a follow up call later in the day / evening to enquire as to the players condition.
Following Emergency Procedures
Scenario – Missing Child
Remain calm and stop the game or training session to ensure the safety of the other players.
Conduct a headcount using the team-sheet or register of names to identify exactly who is missing.
Ask the other children / spectators if they have seen the child, if so when and where.
Check the immediate vicinity and the obvious areas, e.g. the changing rooms.
If you are unable to find, call the emergency services. Parents should be called as a last resort to avoid causing unnecessary panic.
If alone, keep the rest of the group together with you at all times.
Complete incident report form and feedback to the appropriate person at the club your feedback on the procedure to see if there is anything that could be improved in case of similar incidents occurring in the future.