I've spent a lot of time on the range in both the military and civilian settings and seen a lot of different injuries. All that time out in the elements training has led me to think about what my preferred items to have with me on the gun range.
Trauma kits for anyone doing anything adventurous is steadily becoming more popular. Being a medic, I’m happy to see this trend more common, but I also see a lot of incomplete medical kits with items that that won’t get used.
I’m often asked what I recommend be stocked in a good trauma kit for the range so they can build out their own kit. If you think that this that sounds like an awful lot of hassle, I agree with you, which is why I went to the trouble of compiling the items I think you'll need.
If you feel like it’s too much effort, Mountain Man Medical sells most of the items listed below in our Wind River Trauma and First-Aid Kit which I designed with the gun range in mind. If you were to purchase all these items on your own you will pay far more than buying a complete kit, but some people prefer to compile their own.
The gear I’m recommending is only that. A recommendation. I don’t know you or your circumstances and needs, so make sure to adjust this list to suit your personal conditions. If you need more TQs, or a different style of gauze like (ChitoGauze instead of QuikClot) make sure to customize and add those additional things that address your situation the best.
Warning: None of the gear I’m recommending will save a life if you don’t know how to use it. Learn how to use your gear and save a life with a FREE course. The Mountain Man Medical Emergency Trauma Response course doesn’t cost anything but your time and will teach you the basics of life saving skills.
If you’re new to firearm training and looking to make your life a little safer and more comfortable while out on the range, here are some items that I think are essential for any instructor or student of the gun:
- Cooler (for ice)
- Bottled Water (Freeze a few bottles water the night before for bonus points)
- Sun block
- Single serving electrolyte powder
- Camp chair
- Survival Blanket
- Cell Phone/Radio
- AED (This may be more expensive to acquire but a good item for any training company)
Training is safe if all the rules are followed but that’s not always the case. Then there are problems like falls and accidents that are no one’s fault, but always a risk when doing active things in the great outdoors.
Range masters and instructors with several shooting bays and events happening at the same time, should have multiple kits staged at predetermined locations.
A quality trauma kit should include the following items so it will be able to handle 99% of the emergencies you’re likely to encounter and be located in multiple areas for ease and speed of access:
- Tourniquets x 2 (CAT/SOF-T/TMT)
- Hemostatic Gauze (QuikClot/ChitoGauze/Celox)
- OLAES Pressure Bandage
- Elastic Bandages (Ace Wrap)
- Normal Gauze
- Trauma Shears
- Chest Seals
- Duct Tape
- Permanent marker
- Nitrile Gloves
- Cravat (Triangle Bandage)
First-Aid and Comfort Items:
Most the injuries you’re likely to encounter won’t be devastating trauma. Most of what you’ll see are minor cuts from things like slide bite, or dehydration, insect bites and stings, hot brass burns, splinters, and these types of minor inconveniences.
- OTC Meds (ibuprofen, acetaminophen, aspirin, diphenhydramine)
- Burn Cream
- Self-Adhesive Bandages (Band-Aids)
- Anti-septic ointment
- Anti-septic wipes
- Sting and bite wipes
- Medical Tape
Bee Stings, Anaphylactic Shock, Epi-Pens, (and other important meds…)
If you need any medications that are important for sustaining your life, make sure to add them to your gear list! If you, or anyone in your party has a bee sting allergy and access to an Epi Pen, be sure to you know the conditions and method for administering it.