The Buchanan County Sheriff’s Office is distributing tourniquets and Israeli Bandages to all its deputies to further assist the public in medical emergencies.

Israeli Bandages are specially designed to stop bleeding in severe wounds.

Sheriff Bill Puett said the multi-stage project has been in the works for some time to get supplies in place and purchased for deputies.

“This is the first step in making sure they have the medical equipment needed to address any issue of immediacy and life-saving measures,” Puett said.

Puett said they worked with Buchanan County EMS to find the most effective equipment.

They purchased CAT Gen 7 tourniquets, which are simple and used by EMS. The Israeli Bandages will be used for compression and covering wounds.

Since the department is involved with various encounters in the rural areas of the county, it sometimes takes EMS longer to arrive on scene. Investigator Lonnie Bishop helped with the project because he saw the need in the field and rural areas.

“The Buchanan County EMS response time is phenomenal, but if we’re working several crashes at the same time it may be a few minutes,” Bishop said. “Our officers were going out and purchasing their own equipment because they saw the need.”

Puett said the department had four saves with tourniquets that were purchased by deputies themselves.

“I just felt that it was really important that we get this equipment on our officers,” Puett said.

All deputies have first aid training, but Bishop is providing further training to ensure that everyone issued the equipment will know how to successful apply them.

“It just makes the public safer and we can do what we can until EMS arrives,” Bishop said.

The next step, Puett said, is to provide all deputies with full medical “go bags” in all vehicles to provide even more assistance.

“We can use them all across the board and that’s what we plan to move forward with,” Puett said.

Bishop encourages everyone to carry a tourniquet in their car and said they can contact Buchanan County EMS or the Sheriff’s Office with any questions.

Bailey Ketcham can be reached