ICE could save your life

ICE in your phone and ID could save vital minutes if you’re injuredA cyclist lies unconscious in an ambulance. The police are calling bike shops and local cycling clubs describing his clothes and bike to see if anyone can tell them who he is. All the while his family wonders why he’s late getting home.

It’s a scene that emergency workers dread though it’s one they’ve experienced too often. But it’s very easy to make such a horrific scene a little less stressful. Carry identification whenever you go out.

One of the most common items people carry these days is a mobile phone.

The ICE campaign is the brainchild of a paramedic who found that when he went to an accident, there were always mobile phones, but he didn’t know which number to call. No one but you knows who’s who in your address book and some people have hundreds of contacts in their phone.

ICE stands for “in case of emergency”. Enter ICE and the number of an emergency contact in your phone and emergency workers can quickly find the right person to call. If you want to enter more than one contact simply enter ICE1, ICE2 and so on.

There are other simple items of insurance too.

Some people carry a photocopy of their driver licence, others a business card or a handwritten laminated card. The advantage of this is that emergency workers also know who you are as well as who to call.

All these options give you space to write the name of an emergency contact and details about you: any medical conditions or allergies you might suffer from, any medication you’re taking, your blood type. Squeeze as much relevant information onto the card as you can.

Make it easy to find your ID too. The best place is somewhere on your person. The first place emergency workers will look is your pockets, so a safe pocket (jersey or jacket or trouser) is probably the best place to stow it. People may not think to look through your under-seat or bidon tool kit for ID, especially if you’ve been separated from your bike.

I have even heard of someone who puts their emergency contact details on the outside of their helmet with “Dyno” tape. It’s unobtrusive, yet still obvious enough when someone needs to identify you.

None of these take long to put together, but they can much such a difference if the worst happens. Go and do it now, while you’re thinking about it.

See you on the road soon, God willing.

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