USRider and Eastern Kentucky University (EKU) are partnering for the fifth annual large-animal emergency rescue training course. As with previous years’ training, specially trained demonstration animals are being brought in to help provide realistic hands-on training during the seminars.
Two technical large-animal emergency rescue training seminars are being held next spring. Scheduled for March 27-29, 2009, the first seminar is reserved for EKU students. The second seminar, March 31-April 2, 2009, is open to the public, with emphasis on recruiting fire and EMT responders, veterinarians, and others. The training will also include a separate session on hazmat decontamination of large animals. Scheduled for the morning of April 3, this free session will cover the issues related to rescuing large animals that have encountered chemical, biological or radiological contamination. Local and state emergency preparedness officials are encouraged to attend. Interested parties should contact EKU so accommodations can be made. The training is being funded through the Large-Animal Rescue Endowment Fund, administered by USRider.
Through its Equestrian Motor Plan, USRider offers a nationwide roadside assistance program designed especially for equestrians. Since its establishment in January 2002, the company has endeavored to raise awareness of the need for training in large-animal emergency rescue.
The large-animal rescue training will educate fire/rescue personnel, first responders, veterinarians and horse enthusiasts about techniques and procedures to assist large animals involved in transportation accidents and other emergencies. Instruction will cover the use of sedatives and tranquilizers, chemical restraint, rescue ropes and knots, rescue from horse barn fires, mud rescue, helicopter rescue, and water rescue, among other situations. The training, which consists of 30 hours of classroom instruction and hands-on training, qualifies each student to receive FSE 489 credit for the class.
“We’ve found that although emergency responders are trained experts in human rescue and extrication, they usually have no training in large-animal rescue,” said Mark Cole, managing member for USRider. “Because of this lack of training, responders are being put at great risk. Moreover, in many accidents and disasters, animals without life-threatening injuries are being injured further or even killed by use of incorrect rescue techniques.”
Through its Leg-Up Fund, USRider has provided backing for numerous large-animal rescue initiatives, from equine ambulances to individual responder training. In 2005, the company took its efforts in a new direction by creating the first Large-Animal Rescue Endowment Fund at Eastern Kentucky University. The unique endowment fund was established to promote large-animal-rescue training efforts and support related training programs.
“We are very glad to continue our partnership with EKU through their College of Justice and Safety,” said Cole, “especially since the university is located in central Kentucky–an area that is commonly referred to as the horse capital of the world.”
Due to the hands-on nature of the training, each large-animal emergency rescue seminar is limited to 30 participants. Be sure to call and reserve your space today. For more information about the seminars and to register, call the EKU Loss Prevention and Safety Department at (859) 622-1009.
Contributions to the Large-Animal Rescue Endowment Fund may be sent to the Division of University Development, CPO 19A, Jones 324, Eastern Kentucky University, 521 Lancaster Ave., Richmond, Ky., 40475-3102. The Development office may be reached at (859) 622-1583.
USRider Equestrian Motor Plan is a nationwide member-based organization providing roadside trailering assistance, including towing and roadside repairs for tow vehicles and trailers with horses, emergency stabling, veterinary referrals, and more. For more information, visit www.usrider.org or call 1-800-844-1409.