The National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA), North-Central Zone, has begun a two-day training of its staff on basic first aid and casualty handling during disasters.
The North-Central Zonal Coordinator of the agency, Mr Eugene Nyelong,said the programme was initiated by the Director-General of NEMA, retired AVM Muhammadu Muhammed, to build staff capacity for effective response to emergencies.
According to Nyelong, the exercise is organised in collaboration with the Nigerian Red Cross Society to provide staff of the agency with the right skills, competence and operational readiness to handle disasters.
“Building the capacity of personnel on casualty handling is imperative in the event of an emergency, thus reducing loss of lives and further escalation of injuries.
“The Nigerian Red Cross Society is one of the major partners of NEMA and stakeholders in disaster management.
“Therefore, NEMA engaged the society to provide the basic first aid training for certification of the staff and re-certification for those that have been previously trained,” he said.
Mr Nurudeen Magaji, The Branch Training and Resource Mobilisation Officer of the Nigerian Red Cross Society, said that the staff were trained on safety and security, applying basic techniques on breathing and unconscious casualty.
Other areas, Magaji said, included handling severe bleeding cases such as amputation, bullet wounds and embedded objects.
“We also train them on bones setting such as fracture and dislocation, brain and strain,” he said.
He said that the target was to ensure that NEMA staff applied the best first aid to the general public when disaster occurred.
A staff of the agency, Mr Yohanna Audu, thanked the director-general for for giving him the opportunity to be part of the training that was usually meant for those in the Search and Rescue Department.
Audu said that he had learnt how to rescue someone with cardiac issues in an event of disaster.
“I also learned how to rescue an accident victim trapped in a car,’’ he said.
Another staff of the agency, Mrs Linda Adokwu, said first aid training was crucial to disaster manager, adding that the training had refreshed some of the skills she had imbibed in the past.
Adokwu stated that it was very important for rescuers to learn emerging trends in disaster response. (NAN)