First emergency ‘bleeding control cabinets’ installed in Liverpool city centre in bid to save lives18.12.23 - Merseyside
The first six emergency ‘bleeding control cabinets’ have been installed in Liverpool city centre in an attempt to save lives
Each bright-red cabinet is accessible 24 hours a day using a code which is provided by calling 999 and speaking to the ambulance service and contains a portable bleed kit, which can be used as a vital tool to prevent and reduce major blood loss before paramedics arrive.
The newly installed cabinets have been put up in key locations across Liverpool city centre including in the Ropewalks and Mathew Street areas, with four more set to be installed in the next couple of weeks. This is just the start of the roll out of the life-saving equipment, with two cabinets already being installed near Formby beach and a further 20 expected to be put up in locations across the region identified through crime data and with input from outreach workers.
More than 1,500 of the individual accessible bleed kits have already been distributed to organisations and venues across the region, including clubs, bars and pubs, taxis, and schools.
The roll out of the life-saving equipment has been spearheaded by charitable social enterprise KnifeSavers, which originates from the Liverpool University Hospitals Foundation Trust, and is part of a wider campaign focused on educating young people about the dangers and consequences of carrying a knife, as well as educating and empowering the general public on how to act quickly to control major bleeding from any injury.
It was launched followed the fatal stabbing of 12-year-old Ava White in November 2021, and is supported by her mum, Leeann, and the foundation created in her memory.
The campaign is backed by the region’s Police and Crime Commissioner, Emily Spurrell, the Merseyside Violence Reduction Partnership, and Merseyside Police and supports the extensive work undertaken across the region to reduce and prevent serious violence, which has led to a 22% decrease in knife offences from June 2022 to June 2023 and continues to reduce.
KnifeSavers founder and consultant trauma surgeon at Aintree Hospital, Nikhil Misra, said: “Whether it’s a knife wound, or an injury from a fall or a car crash, every second counts when it comes to controlling the bleeding and hopefully saving someone’s life.
“These kits provide the essential equipment needed to reduce and prevent catastrophic bleeding until the arrival of paramedics and it’s our mission to try and get the cabinets and bleed kits truly accessible across the whole of the North West, and then all of the country.
“The kits are only a part of a much larger regional campaign which is centred on education about recognising the time critical need to recognise and control major bleeding, and the potentially fatal risks of carrying a knife and a single knife wound.”
Merseyside’s Police Commissioner Emily Spurrell, who oversees the Merseyside Violence Reduction Partnership said: “My priority, and the priority of our Violence Reduction Partnership and Merseyside Police, is on stopping serious violence and preventing tragedies from taking place, so it is my profound wish these cabinets will never be needed.
“But we know bleeding from a knife wound can prove fatal in as little as five minutes, so the emergency first aid delivered immediately after an injury is critical.
“By supporting KnifeSavers to make these kits publicly accessible 24/7, if a serious incident does occur, we can help a member of the public to minimise blood loss until professional medical help arrives. This has the power to save lives and prevent other mothers from enduring the heartache Leeann has suffered.”
Director of Merseyside’s Violence Reduction Partnership (MVRP) Supt Georgie Garvey added: “The MVRP is proud to work with KnifeSavers and our key partners to deliver these emergency bleeding control cabinets as part of our violence prevention work across Merseyside.
“The early stages after a violent incident are often the most important in terms of delivering life-saving medical care. These cabinets will assist members of the community to provide a rapid response prior to the arrival of emergency services, enabling a wound to be packed or wrapped and buying the injured person more time, which ultimately could help to save their life.”
Merseyside Police’s Superintendent Phil Mullally, Merseyside’s Lead for Serious Violence and Knife Crime said: “Partnership working is vital in reaching and engaging with our communities across Merseyside and we are pleased to support the roll out of KnifeSavers bleed control cabinets.
“Reducing serious violence is a priority for the force and we have ongoing operations and initiatives targeted at reducing and preventing knife crime. We are targeting serious violence hotspot areas with high visibility patrols and using new powers such as Serious Violence Reduction Orders to keep the pressure on those who unlawfully carry and use knives in Merseyside.
“The recent reductions in knife crime are testament to our strong enforcement of the law and partners’ going work to educate, inform and tackle the root causes of violent crime. These cabinets are an additional measure to potentially save lives and reduce the impact violence can have on communities.”
Liverpool City Council’s Cabinet Member with responsibility for Community Safety, Councillor Laura Robertson-Collins said: “A huge amount of work is going into preventing knife crime and the police and partners are doing fantastic work in tackling the issue.
“These type of incidents are thankfully rare and we hope that these cabinets are never needed. But, as with the defibrillators that we have in public locations around the city, they could prove invaluable in the first minutes after an incident and play a vital role in saving someone’s life.”
The installation of the first six cabinets in the city centre has also been supported by Liverpool Nightlife CIC.
Members of the public can access the locked cabinets by ringing 999 where the emergency services will then provide them with an access code and give them simple instructions on how to use the kits.
The equipment, which can be used by any bystanders, including police officers who are often the first on the scene, include scissors, gloves and tourniquets aand can be used during any severe bleed trauma incidents.
To find out how to use the kits and where they are located, please visit https://www.knifesavers.co.uk/
A free KnifeSavers app, which gives people advice on how to stop bleeding is available to download on all devices. Search for ‘knifesavers’ on the App Store or Google Play.