TACO method offers life-saving relief from overheating


What would you do if you were outside and saw a person suddenly overcome by the heat?

“Extreme hyperthermia, the dangers include seizure, brain damage, and even potentially death,” said Dr. Chris Sampson, an emergency medicine physician.

Heatstroke can happen while running, camping, or any type of outdoor event.

With a tarp and water, you can cool someone down from the heat.

“The TACO method is very important for people you may encounter that are confused unresponsive or have passed out from the heat and will not wake up. These people often need rapid cooling in order to help save their lives,” said Sampson.

First, you have to place the person on a tarp. Then you pour ice over them to help with the cooling. Last you keep them moving by holding the tarp in the air and rocking them back and forth.

“Most of your heat dissipation occurs on the surface of your skin, and by oscillating or moving the tarp back and forth and having that cold water get in contact with all portions of their body, you’re able to get the heat off them in a more rapid fashion,” said Sampson.

Taking action before first responders arrive, could be the difference between life and death.

However, despite efforts to cool the person down, 911 should still be called.

Copyright 2020 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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