The Occupational First Aid Attendants

Association of British Columbia


The City of Vancouver’s Inaugural First Aid Competition was a huge success. It was held on May 8th at the 2004 Family Day & Truck Roadeo at Manitoba Yard, at the tail end of North American Occupational Safety and Health (NAOSH) Week. The competition was sponsored by Employee Health and Safety, at City Hall. Awards were also donated by the Occupational First Aid Attendants Association of BC (OFAAABC).

First Aid Competition
Matt Wheeler (Sewers) treats Rendeep Khella's (City Hall) hand abrasion.
First Aid Competition
Clay Penner (Sanitation) gets assistance from Diane to control a bleed while Lindsay observes.

The Scenarios

The teams were judged in a first aid room scenario and a multi-patient trauma scenario. The teams began their day by each member treating a walk in patient in a first aid room setting. Four patients were presented: a concussion, crushed digits, particles in the eye and a backstrain with a hand abrasion. The attendants had 10 minutes to assess, treat, make a referral decision and document the injuries.

After a 10 minute break, the teams proceeded to Central Stores where the multi patient scene had been prepared. Upon walking in, they were presented with a running forklift that had knocked some shelving over, trapping an unconscious, non-breathing patient (Karen Kindrid from CUPE 1004) and striking Craig Burdett (Waterworks) in the leg, causing an arterial bleed in his thigh. The operator of the forklift, Darcy Dragonnetti (Sewers), amongst all the commotion, began developing some chest pain, which was also to be managed by the team. Two witnesses to the accident (Lindsay Boyko and her sister Diane) were also on the scene to assist where needed.

Teams had 15 minutes to manage the scene, assess and treat all three patients. The scenario ended by Paramedics (BJ and Craig) coming onto the scene and receiving reports from the attendants on the conditions of their patients.

The Teams

As this year was the first competition hosted by the City of Vancouver, the event was only open to teams from Engineering Services, to keep the numbers manageable. The three teams who competed are:

  • Ward Gogle (CAPTAIN) - Sanitation
  • Clay Penner - Sanitation
  • Robert Acker - PNE
  • Jag Chima - Sanitatio
Turd Herders
  • Matt Wheeler (CAPTAIN) - Sewers
  • Andrew Starrit - Sewers
  • Camron Foulds - Sewers
  • Ron Enns - Sewers
Under Cover
  • Dusty Steinson (CAPTAIN) - Waterworks
  • Paul Henderson - Landfill
  • Phil Hazell - VSTS
  • Jennifer Irwin - Landfill

First Aid Competition
Paul Henderson (Landfill) gives a report to BCAS Paramedic Craig while judge Allan Zdunich observes.
First Aid Competition
Phil Hazell (Transfer Station) applies pressure to greg's arterial leg bleed.

Awards Under Cover was awarded with the "Top Team" Award, scoring 573.5 points of a possible 785 points. Second place was the G-men with 457.5 points and a close third place to the Turd Herders with 455.5 points. The Top team was awarded with gift certificates to the Keg and the other two teams were presented with items from the OFAAABC.

The "Top Team Captain" award was presented to Dusty Steinson, from "Under Cover."

"Best Performance by an Individual Attendant" was shared between Jennifer Irwin from the Landfill and Andrew Starrit from Sewers. This prize was a combination of points from the first aid room scenario and nominations from the judges at both scenarios.

The "Best Patient Care" award was also shared between Irwin and Starrit. This award was for the attendant who "not only looked after the patients’ physical state but their mental state as well." This could be by explaining things to the victim(s), taking steps to calm and reassure them and looking after the bystanders. The patients were asked to vote for the attendant who best performed in this way.

An award was also given to the "Best Actor" Lindsay Boyko was voted best actor by the competitors. She did an excellent job of playing a witness to the accident, often inconsolable (and a distraction) unless the first aid team took care of her as well.

Thank You

The competition’s success can be attributed to the many dedicated volunteers.

Nick Balenzano (Telus) and Ian MacDonald (Maple Ridge First Aid School), both from the Lower Mainland First Aid Competition League were instrumental in assisting in the preparation, logistics and judging of the competition. We were very grateful to also have Ingrid Dammers, an expert in makeup application for first aid scenarios.

Many thanks to the judges, Del Goudreau and Allan Zdunich from the OFAAABC, Alberto, Ron and Brandon from the Vancouver Fire Department and Dana Cullum from the BC Ambulance Service.

All the volunteer patients did a fantastic job of creating the scene. In addition to those mentioned above, credit must also be given to: Rendeep Khella from the mailroom at City Hall, Elizabeth Kukely from Grouse Mountain First Aid Ski Patrol (FASP), Patrick Gahan, son of Colleen Gahan in Streets and Kari, a student volunteer.

The First Aid Competition was a fantastic way to see the City of Vancouver’s First Aid Attendants at work. Credit must be given to the competition participants as the training curriculum for Occupational First Aid Level II certification does not cover much about triage but each team managed three patients and two bystanders efficiently and professionally. Each team displayed well coordinated teamwork, handing off 3 fully assessed, well cared for and prioritized patients to Paramedics within 13 minutes of entering the scene.

As the inaugural competition was enjoyed by the participants and spectators, we look forward to opening registration for the competition to other Departments within the City next year.

First Aid Competition
Paul Henderson (landfill) trains Lindsay Boyko to breathe for his patient while he assesses the injuries.
First Aid Competition
Ron Enns and Andrew Starrit (Sewers) insert and oral airway into their patient karen kindrid.

Kim Kennedy
Safety and First Aid Coordinator – Engineering Services