Clear, succinct information, sensible design, and strongly organized information combine to make this field guide an invaluable aid to travelers and outdoor recreationists.
In eight color-coded, tabbed sections on safety, CPR, medical emergencies, injuries, the environment, poison, disaster, and survival, Jones’ (ECG Notes: Interpretation and Management Guide, 2009, etc.) guide highlights the basics of medical assistance and preventative actions. These basics include resuscitation techniques for adults, children (including infants), and pets; signs and symptoms of ailments, ranging from appendicitis to broken bones to heart attacks; common varieties of insects in the United States and how their bites and stings can affect people; how to collect, filter, and treat water to make it safe to drink; and how to diagnose and provide treatment for chemical burns, among many other emergency techniques. The guide looks much like a reporter’s notebook, and it’s small enough to carry in one hand. Throughout, it presents its information in clear language, with copious warnings (“If the person is conscious but cannot talk and appears to be choking, CPR is not appropriate”) and contacts that cover an exhaustive number of emergency situations. The well-chosen physical design also includes waterproof pages that are easy to write on with markers, which will allow users to make notes and carry the guide into a variety of different environments. Jones arranges the text into easily digestible chunks, using colors, subheads, graphics, photos, and text boxes to organize and enliven it. Readers can quickly find topics of interest by searching through the tabbed sections or by using the index. Jones, a registered nurse and EMT, assembled this book with an eye toward providing readers with enough information to get a handle on tough situations until professionals can take over—and it meets this task with clarity and aplomb.
A copy of Jones’ safety guide should have a place of honor in every vehicle and camping kit.