The City of Chicago is installing hundreds of kits in city buildings to treat bleeding gunshot victims under a new program officials say could help save lives in an emergency.
Chicago's Office of Emergency Management and Communications announced earlier this month that the city has begun installing 426 wall mounted "Bleeding Control Kits" in 269 buildings across the city.
Those buildings include City Hall, Chicago Public Library locations, the Chicago Cultural Center, medical clinics, senior centers and more.
OEMC said the kits are being installed under a new program called "Safe Chicago" in partnership with the Chicago Fire Department, Chicago Police Department and the city's Assets and Information Services.
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"It's just another layer of security and protection," OEMC's Executive Director Rich Guidice said.
Each of the kits contain enough supplies to treat eight victims, with tourniquets, gauze, shears, gloves and an instruction manual.
"The box has eight tourniquets and also gauze, so it's basically to stop the bleeding," Guidice said.
The city purchased the kits for $500 apiece through the federal Urban Areas Security Initiative grant, which was large enough that more will likely be installed in CTA stations and park district sites, according to OEMC.
Officials also noted that bleeding emergencies can stem from multiple causes: "falls, penetrating injuries, gunshot wounds and more."
But the new kits come as the city has seen at least 2,688 shootings and 602 homicides so far this year as of Monday, according to police.
Officials say the kits are a proactive step the city is taking that they hope will never have to be used.
"We're living in different times. And we're doing our best to adapt to the environment that we're living in," Guidice said.