Roanoke County police now carrying high-tech trauma kits

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ROANOKE COUNTY (WSLS 10) - In many instances, police officers are the first to arrive at an incident.

"They're specifically to deal with traumas to the body from hemorrhages, some type of bleeding," says Sgt. Jeff Johnson with the Roanoke County Police Department.

Johnson said the demand for trauma kits among law enforcement is due in large part to the rise of mass shooter incidents, like the airport shooting that killed multiple people in Florida just days ago.

"It's just a great potential to be able to save either my co-workers or my own life when involved in any type of critical incident," explained officer Chris Brown, also with the Roanoke County Police Department.

The $14,000 purchase, funded by the department, includes a tourniquet, trauma dressings and a nasal airway tube. All 140 officers in the agency are now taking to the streets with the life-saving kit.

"Absolutely, it definitely makes a big difference, better training, offers better equipment," continued Brown.

Before receiving the trauma kit, officers were using an older kit, which only contained basic items like patches and aspirin.

"We tell our officers they're responsible for their safety and wellness, and I think it applies to the public also, in today's day and age," says Johnson.

Roanoke county police said that the idea of these trauma kits is not to replace paramedics, but rather to train police enough about medical care before medics arrive.