Choosing the right CoTCCC approved tourniquet for your every-day-carry
When considering which tourniquet to carry, IRT recommends that you only consider commercial tourniquets approved by the Committee on Tactical Combat Casualty Care (CoTCCC). These non-pneumatic tourniquets have been manufactured to the highest medical standards, tested by the global authority on tactical trauma care and put to use saving lives by combat operators, paramedics and law enforcement around the world.
While all of these tourniquets are proven effective at stopping massive extremity bleeding, there are two that IRT recommends and stocks in our Rapid Options Bag line up of Trauma kits.
The first is the Combat Application Tourniquet (C.A.T) Gen 7 made by North American Rescue
The second is the SAM XT Tourniquet made by SAM Medical.
The reasons behind selecting these two tourniquets over the others are based on three factors. Ease of self-application, Ease of buddy-application, and Ease of carry. These two tourniquets offer rigidity that the SOFT-T, the RMT and the TMT don’t. The rigidity of the compression bands on the CAT and the SAM XT ensure the tourniquets keep their shape without twists or tangles during application. This is a huge time saving benefit and spares the user from needing to rely on fine motor dexterity to undue twists in the band during high stress traumatic injury events. High quality hook-loop tape (velcro) assists both of these tourniquets during the initial tightening of the band. The user can pull the band tight with less pulls (2-3 with CAT & SAM XT, 3-5 with SOFT-T & RMT), and without the need to brace the limb against a firm base to achieve effective tightening. The last advantage the CAT and the SAM XT have over the other tourniquets is their quick launch configuration for storage. Both of these tourniquets can be folded small and hold themselves together without the use of rubber bands or other aid devices. They also can be carried in manufactured holsters attached on a belt or MOLLE webbing. For these reason IRT believes the CAT and SAM XT have an edge over the other CoTCCC approved extremity tourniquets.
For clarity, it should be stated that above all device features, TRAINING WITH YOUR EQUIPMENT is what will make you the most effective life-saver in a traumatic injury event. A person who regularly trains with a piece of equipment or tool will always beat an untrained person. Whichever device you carry, please train with it regularly and make sure you are counted among People, Prepared.