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The Professional Lifeguard, Faculty safety and patron surveillance, injury prevention, water

rescue skills, caring for head neck and spinal injuries

Lifeguarding Final Study Guide

Distressed Active Drowning Passive Drowning

Swimmer Victim Victim
Head Position Above water Tilted back with face Face-up or face-
looking up down; submerged

Appearance/facial Trying to support struggling to keep limp or convulsive-

expressions self; concern for head above the like movements;
personal safety surface; struggling to floating or
reach surface; submerged; may look
panic/wide-eyed like a shadow if

Breathing Is breathing Struggles to breath Not breathing

Arm and Leg Floating or treading Arms and Legs No Motion

water; waving for alternately moving up
help and down

Body Position Horizontal, vertical, vertical, leaning Horizontal or verticl

or diagonal, slightly back
depending on means
of support

Locomotion little or no forward None None

progress; losing
ability to support self

Sounds Able to call for help Cannot call out for None

Location At the surface At the surface, Floating at the

underwater, or surface, sinking, or
sinking submerged on the

I. General Info (Day 1)

A. Types of Rescue Victims ^^^^^^^^
B. Scanning Challenges
1. Monotony
2. Fatigue
3. Distractions
4. Blind spots Glare
5. Water movement and surface distortion
6. Murky water
7. Heavy patron loads
8. Low patron loads
9. High air temperature
C. Legal Issues
1. Consent: must ask for consent to treat a victim or ask parent/guardian of
victim under 18
2. Implied Consent: Consent isn’t needed during life-threatening situations,
when the victim is not conscious, or if a victim is under 18 and their
parent/guarding is not available
3. RID and failure to act
a) Recognition: recognize struggling swimmers with good scanning
b) Intrusion: secondary duties cannot obstruct the primary duties of a
lifeguard when on surveillance
c) Distraction: avoid distractions on surveillance such as
d) These dangers can lead to a victim drowning on duty
D. Emergency Action Plans (EAPs)
1. every facility has different signals to start EAPs
2. there should be multiple EAPs for different emergency situations
3. Safety team: the lifeguard team working with a larger network of people
to prevent, prepare for, and respond to an emergency
E. Report, Advise Release
1. After any incident, first document it at try to get witnesses to fill out forms
2. Advise the victim on further steps to take and prevention for this action in
the future if they are not in a critical condition
3. release the victim if they are better or in the care of other emergency
II. Rescues (Day 2)
A. Conscious victim facing towards you
B. Conscious victim facing away or unconscious victim at the surface
C. Unconscious victim below the surface
D. Head, neck, or Spinal injury
E. Removing victim from the water
F. Removing head, neck, or spinal from the water
G. Escapes
II. First Aid (Day 3)
A. The Primary Assessment
1. Size up the Scene
a) check if the scene is safe to enter
b) check for victim’s safety and move the victim if necessary
2. Check for responsiveness and ask if they are okay
a) Adult: tap shoulder
b) Child: tap shoulder
c) Infant: tap bottom of foot
3. Get EMS if no response
4. Put the victim face-up
5. 10 second pulse and breath check
a) open airway to look, listen, feel for breathing
b) check for a pulse with two fingers
(1) Adult: carotid pulse
(2) Child: carotid pulse
(3) Infant: brachial pulse
6. If no breathing in Child or Infant give 2 ventilations (Skip if they suddenly
7. Check quickly for severe breathing
8. What to do next:
a) No breathing or pulse: CPR
b) Pulse and No Breathing:
(1) Adult: 1 ventilation every 5 seconds
(2) Child: 1 ventilation every 3 seconds
(3) Infant: 1 ventilation every 3 seconds
c) Severe Bleeding: provide care for the wound
9. Put in HAINES recovery position if:
a) leaving breathing victim alone
b) cannot clear victim’s airway due to fluids or vomit
B. Pulse and No Breathing(Choking)
C. No Pulse or Breathing(CPR)
1. One Rescue CPR:
a) 30 chest compressions at 100 bpm
(1) Adult: at least 2 in.
(2) Child about 2 in.
(3) Infant about 1 ½ in. with 2 fingers
b) 2 ventilations
2. Two Rescue CPR
a) chest compressions at 100 bpm
(1) Adult: 30 compressions with 2 hands
(2) Child: 15 compressions with 2 hands
(3) Infant: 15 compressions with 2 thumbs
b) 2 ventilations
c) switch positions every 2 minutes (5 cycles)
3. Using an AED
a) make sure victim is dry
(1) no puddles around you or the victim
(2) chest must be dry
b) make sure chest is bare
(1) remove hair from chest
(2) avoid: pacemakers, rings/jewelry, patches
(3) If an infant: sandwich the pads
c) continue CPR until AED is ready to use
d) perform 2 minutes of CPR after AED is used, starting with
D. Other First Aid
a) Signs and Symptoms
b) Allergies
c) Medications
d) Pertinent past medical history
e) Last oral intake
f) Events leading up to the incident
2. Sudden Illness
a) Diabetic Emergency: give sugary drinks
b) Fainting: treat the victim carefully and put on their side if they are
c) Seizures on land: clear the scene quickly
d) Seizures in water: support head and neck while seizure occurs.
Remove the victim from the water as soon as the seizure ends
3. Stroke = FAST
a) Face weakness
b) Arm weakness
c) Speech slurred
d) Time to summon EMS