I am writing this more of sharing an experience and as a brutal reminder to others as anything on why it is best to be prepared.
A few weeks ago on the way back from a nice weekend of riding in the Texas Hill Country one of the bikes in our group went down (wrecked). I have not pulled a faster U-turn on a bike before to rush to aid the couple involved. Neither were wearing helmets during the crash and coming up on it was a sight that might look like the aftermath of a chase scene in an action movie with parts of a bike everywhere then trails of blood leading up to a couple laying in the road severely hurt.
Backing up a bit in time about 3 years ago a good friend of mine was working for an outdoors activity supply company. During this time she had quite an obsession with safety and being prepared for the worst which was about the same time I started riding a motorcycle again after a nasty wreck I was involved in. She hounded me for a few months about making sure I carry first aid supplies and these things she called “trauma packs,” which are to help blood clotting happen faster, with me in case something happened. After quite a bit of this I finally broke down and bought a set of two of them along with an outdoors activity first aid kit which I carry in my saddlebags to this day.
Fast forwarding back to a few weeks ago the moment I had feared and hoped never would had occurred in which it was necessary to use these. As I pulled to a stop I screamed at my passenger open the right saddlebag now and grab the items in there. She grabbed my first aid kit and the trauma packs then rushed up to the scene as I was putting the kickstand down and dismounting the bike. Thankfully an ER nurse witnessed this and stopped to render aid whom was able to use the trauma packs better than any of us ever could have.
Both involved were airlifted to the nearest hospital trauma unit and will recover fully in time according to the doctors.
The aftermath showed all of us present one thing: these trauma packs and the first aid kit were used to stem a severe head wound on one of the two involved and might have saved her life. It was a very traumatic experience to all of us, and it is one that has me beyond thankful to my friend whom years before hounded me enough to become prepared for such a situation. Had she not then a young woman very well might not have made it alive to a hospital years later.
With that said I urge all of my fellow riders to be prepared for such an incident as you never know when they might occur unfortunately and sadly they can happen in a blink of an eye where seconds count. I know we hear this all the time riding from people that do not ride, but this is coming from one of your own as a warning and asking a favor in case one day that is myself or one of your loved ones needing it.
Postmortem I would say a more “trauma oriented” first aid kit would have been a better choice than the outdoors one I had chosen, but the trauma packs were the star of the day and should be standard issue for every riding group in case of an accident as they really do work. Another note would be to know how to use them and do not wait for an accident to follow instructions. They are easy to use, but require knowledge to use in a moment’s notice and had a nurse not been present using them would have taken much longer.