HR Management & Compliance

Train Employees on Emergency First Aid

When a person stops breathing following a workplace accident or other medical emergency, fast action is critical. Someone who stops breathing can die or suffer brain damage in minutes without prompt and proper help. BLR’s 7-Minute Safety Trainer says you should train your workers to:

  • Know whom to contact if someone stops breathing.
  • Make the call quickly.
  • Bring help to the victim; don’t move the person.

Coworkers must react quickly, and first steps should include:

  • If it’s safe to approach, kneel beside the person, tap him or her, and shout, “Are you OK?”
  • Call for help or ask others in the area to phone for medical aid and bring a pocket mouth-to-mouth resuscitation device if there’s one in the first-aid kit.
  • If the person doesn’t respond to calling, check for breathing by:
    —Seeing if his/her chest is rising and falling
    —Putting your ear to the person’s mouth and nose to listen and feel for breathing

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If the person is not breathing and no one trained in cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) is present, coworkers should:

  • Lay the victim on his or her back.
  • Loosen clothing around the victim’s neck.
  • Check that nothing is blocking the mouth or throat.
  • Tilt the person’s head back slightly and lift under the chin to open the airway.
  • Hold the person’s mouth open with your thumb.
  • Pinch the person’s nose and cover his or her mouth with yours; try to make a leakproof seal.
  • Use a disposable pocket mouth-to-mouth resuscitation device, if available.
  • Blow into the person’s mouth once every 5 seconds (every 3 seconds for a child).
  • Repeat until you see the person’s chest rise and fall, and see or feel breathing from his or her mouth.
  • Remove your mouth and let the person exhale.
  • Blow into the person’s mouth several more times for a second or so until he or she is able to breathe unaided.

7-Minute Safety Trainer stresses the importance of avoiding actions that could further harm the victim. To make sure that doesn’t happen:

  • Don’t move the person unless it’s necessary to save his or her life.
  • Summon medical help as quickly as possible.
  • Don’t provide medication without medical supervision.
  • If you’re not sure what to do, don’t do anything until medical help arrives.

If you haven’t taken CPR training, you should. The Red Cross and similar agencies regularly offer CPR courses. Also, consider getting trained on automated external defibrillator (AEDs); more and more workplaces are adding these devices to their first-aid supplies. Once you have completed your training, inform management that you’ve been trained and are available to help in an emergency.

These tips were excerpted from the 7-Minute Safety Trainer session called “First Aid for Stopped Breathing.” In addition to the trainer’s outline, the session also includes an illustrated handout, quiz, and quiz answers.


Effective, 7-minute sessions provide comprehensive safety training at an average cost of $1 a day. Get the details.


Need quick-and-easy training on dozens of safety topics? BLR has just the solution for you with 7-Minute Safety Trainer.

Effective Safety Training in Just 7 Minutes!

To help train employees in a broad range of safety and health topics, savvy safety professionals have relied on BLR’s 7-Minute Safety Trainer for years. This essential training resource allows you to provide concise, memorable training easily and effectively in just a few minutes. Materials are ready to use, and each session supplies a detailed trainer’s outline, as well as a handout, quiz, and quiz answers, to get your points across quickly—and cost-effectively.

All told, this “trainer’s bible” contains 50 prewritten meetings covering almost every aspect of safety you’d want or need to train on, in a format designed to be taught in as little as 7 minutes each. All of them are perfect for getting new employees off to a safe start, as well as keeping veteran workers alert and up to date on all your safety concerns.

Major topics in the 7-Minute Safety Trainer include:
Confined spaces
—Electrical safety
—Fire safety and emergency response
—HazCom
—Machine guarding and lockout/tagout
—Material handling
—PPE use and care
—Housekeeping/slips, trips, and falls
—And dozens more

Download Table of Contents
Download Sample Safety Meeting

Just make as many copies as you need of the included handouts and quizzes, and you’re ready to train.

Equally important is that the program ships new meetings every quarter to respond to new and changed regulations. This service is included in the program price, which averages just over $1 a working day. In fact, this is one of BLR’s most popular safety programs.

If you’d like to personally evaluate 7-Minute Safety Trainer and see how it can build safety awareness, we’ll be happy to send it to you for 30 days on a no-cost, no-obligation trial basis. Just let us know and we’ll arrange it.