Life is unpredictable and sometimes, ruthless too. Tragedies don’t knock on doors before entering someone’s life. Unfortunate events come unannounced and wreak havoc like a tropical storm. To face such situations with dexterity, one needs courage, resolve, resilience and life-saving skills—skills that can help people survive dire situations by enabling them to think logically, and make wise decisions with, perhaps, a calmer mind.
Apart from saving oneself, these skills help save others as well. Before Bristol-based IT consultant John Volanthen dove into the flooded caves in Thailand to rescue 12 boys and their coach, he did not know that his passion for diving could actually help him save the lives of those children. In this feature, Soulveda explores five important life skills that can help people survive tragedies, and above all, save lives.
It’s not every day that one comes across a sportsman defeating his opponents and saving their lives on a single day. But that’s what happened earlier this year in Michigan. Fifteen-year-old high school student Xavier saved his opponent from drowning. After a few lapses in the training session, Xavier saw his competitor struggling to keep his head above water, after losing control over his breath. Xavier swam to him and saved his opponent from drowning.
This is probably why swimming tops the list of life-saving skills. It’s not just a skill that improves wellbeing but also ends up being instrumental in saving lives. Whether it is saving someone from drowning, or pulling someone out from rip-currents, or saving lives in circumstances like floods, or even a tsunami, a good swimmer has their job cut out for them.
A 36-year-old bus driver in central China, Wang Fei, was lauded for his courage when he saved 16 passengers from a fatal accident. A huge metal plate came crashing down on the windshield putting the lives of passengers at risk. But Fei didn’t lose his cool. He carefully parked the bus away from the moving traffic and saved the lives of passengers.
Driving is certainly a skill everyone must learn, not only for functional reasons, but for handling emergencies as well. For instance, if someone is having a stroke, and time is of the essence, driving the victim to a hospital could sometimes be a wiser decision than waiting for an ambulance. An individual with good driving skills can be quite helpful in such incidents.