Willacy County deputy helps injured woman using TAC RMP-funded safety equipment

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A Willacy County sheriff's deputy used safety equipment purchased through the TAC Risk Management Pool’s (TAC RMP) 2019 Safety Equipment Program (SEP) to save a county resident's life in April.

Sheriff's Cpl. David Robles used a combat application tourniquet to stop an accident victim’s bleeding before Willacy County Emergency Medical Services arrived. The woman lost part of her arm in the automobile accident.

"We've got some dedicated people," Sheriff Larry Spence told the Raymondville Chronicle/News. "The first guy there was the right guy there at the right time."

Chief Deputy Joe Jimenez said fast-thinking Robles grabbed the tourniquet from a trauma kit in his vehicle, one of eight kits the county purchased using the SEP funds. This was the first time the office has purchased trauma kits for staff.

"We had a class on basic first aid and they had those kits," Jimenez said. "I did some research and ordered them. In our community, we don't have a hospital, so it’s 23 miles to (the hospital in) Harlingen. We're the first responders. By the time the EMS gets there, we're already taking care of and evaluating the patient."

This year, TAC RMP provided more than $800,000 in SEP funding to 203 counties in the Workers' Compensation Program. The money can be used to purchase road and bridge and law enforcement safety equipment from online stores.