Ambulance Class Examination

Examination Of The Ambulance Class

The members forming the ambulance class in connection with the above Brigade were examined for certificates on Saturday afternoon, by Surgeon-Major Hutton late of Rifle Brigade (Prince Consort's Own), in the Watch House, South Pier. The number of candidates was 15 and in addition there were present Mr S. Malcolm, hon. secretary to the Brigade, and Dr J. R. Crease, hon. surgeon, and teacher of the class. At the house the members (who were in full uniform) were drawn up in line, and saluted the examining officer in making his appearance. Operations were commenced by the names being called over, after which the members were examined in the use of the triangular bandage in bandaging wounded arms, shoulders, chest, &c., all of which were very creditably performed. They were next told off into parties of three for the purpose of stretcher drill, carrying wounded persons, and restoring the apparently drowned. The manner in which this part of the examination was carried out favourably impressed the inspecting officer. This being concluded they were next examined bandaging broken thighs, legs &c and in this part of the inspection great dexterity was also shown by them, the bandages round the various parts the body supposed to be injured being very skilfully adjusted. For “splints" the members made use a miscellaneous collection of articles, such straw, old newspapers, bits of Venetian blinds, &c. This being the whole of the practical part of the programme, the men were taken by twos into an adjoining room, and asked several questions in relation to various parts of the body, the arteries, veins, &c, and the means to be taken in cases of burns or scalds, persons suffocated, bites from rabid animals, and the antidotes to be given in cases of poisoning. On the conclusion of his examination Surgeon- Major Hutton addressed the members, and gave a brief resume of the aims and objects the St. John's Ambulance Association. He instanced several cases which had recently come under his notice, where persons had received speedy help from pupils of the association, notably the case of a lady who had been nearly drowned at Plymouth December last, and who was restored after nearly two hours' exertion. He also laid before the members several statistics of the number of persons killed and injured annually on the railways of the United Kingdom, as also the number killed and injured in mines during the last years. From an analysis which he had made he found that more persons were killed and injured on the railways last year than had been killed and wounded during the Afghan and Cape campaigns. In conclusion he congratulated the members on the satisfactory manner in which the various parts of the programme had been carried out, showing that they had been thoroughly trained by Dr Crease, to whom he thought great credit was due. (Applause) He did not want to flatter them, but he must say that of all the examinations which he had conducted he had never taken part in one where the answers to questions had been given in such straightforward and practical manner, and where the bandaging had been so creditably done. (Hear, hear.) He hoped to be spared to visit them again next year for re-examination, when he trusted to see the class at least doubled in numbers, and that he should also hear of classes being started in every workshop and factory in town. (Applause) The movement, he further observed, was spreading to all parts the world, classes being now held Malta, Australia, and in other countries. (Hear, hear.) On the suggestion Deputy-Captain Watkins, three hearty cheers were given to the examining officer, and the interesting proceedings terminated, having lasted for nearly three hours. We understand that on receipt of the Inspector's report (which is expected in about ten days) application will made to the head-quarters of the St. John's Association for permission for the successful members to wear a badge with a cross on the arm, so as to distinguish them from the other members while on duty. It is intended for the class to meet on the first Wednesday of every month for further instruction.

Source: Shields Daily Gazette 27 March 1882

The South Shields Volunteer Life Brigade —The other evening, Surgeon-Major Hutton, the examiner Ambulance Classes under the St. John's Ambulance Association, conducted an examination of an Ambulance Corps at St Helens. He afterwards addressed the members and during his remarks referred in flattering terms to the above Brigade and the newly formed ambulance company in connection with it, under the care of Dr Crease. The Major said: —"Some weeks ago he was examining a class composed of members of the Volunteer Life Brigade, on the river Tyne, at South Shields. That brigade consisted of gentlemen who had formed themselves into a corps for the purpose of saving life from shipwreck, and only three or four days before his examination, they had been instrumental in saving five lives from a shipwreck at the mouth of the Tyne. (Cheers.) Within twenty minutes from the time they had received the signal of the vessel being in distress, those lives were saved. What those men were doing to life at sea the St. John's Ambulance Association were endeavouring to do by all means possible on land. They were not only endeavouring to save life, but also to alleviate the large amount of human suffering and pain which necessarily attended the accidents which were so numerous in this country, and he thought that was a duty which had been too long neglected.

Source: Shields Daily Gazette 21 July 1872