The difference between life and death

A potentially life-saving bleed control kit has been installed outside the Applegreen petrol station on Gloucester Road in partnership with Avon and Somerset Police, NHS England South West and HeartSafe.

The bleed kit, which is designed to control bleeding after someone suffers a traumatic injury, is one of 144 which are being installed on the side of existing HeartSafe defibrillators across Avon and Somerset.

The installation marked the start of Operation Sceptre, a national week of action for police forces across the UK to come together and raise awareness of operational activity to tackle, disrupt and prevent knife crime and the tragic effects it brings.

The kits include trauma dressings and tourniquets to help manage bleeds as well as nitrile gloves, scissors, and a colour-coded instruction guide on what to use depending on where the injury is. They are deigned to be easy-to-use and will be instantly accessible in an emergency.

People should always call 999 and ask for an ambulance in an emergency, but these kits are designed to help in the moments immediately after a medical emergency until an ambulance or first responder arrives on scene.

Avon and Somerset Force Lead for Knife Crime, Chief Inspector Mike Vass, said: “We know we cannot police our way out of serious violence, it has to be a partnership approach, not just between us and our partners in health and social care, but also with members of our communities who can play a key part in helping us.

“We employ a number of different tactics to deal with knife crime and prevent it at the source but in the unfortunate event that a person is seriously injured, we hope that these kits will go some way to preventing the tragic loss of life we’ve been seeing in our communities.”

Members of Avon and Somerset Police, HeartSafe, local councillors, and partners from the local Violence Reduction Partnership gathered today to see the new kit installed and raise awareness within the local community.

Deputy Police and Crime Commissioner Claire Hiscott said: “We are all too aware of the consequences and impact knife crime can have on individuals, their families, and our communities.

“There is a huge amount of fantastic work happening across Avon and Somerset to tackle knife crime and its causes. The Violence Reduction Units and partners are offering prevention advice, mentoring, sports-based activities, as well as programmes to keep young people in education.

“Alongside community prevention initiatives I am so glad to see and support the availability of bleed kits. These kits mean early access to vital treatment which saves lives.”

The installation complements ongoing work being carried out by the police to tackle knife crime, with multiple weapon surrender bins installed across the region encouraging young people to safely discard of knives or weapons, as well as a number of educational workshops in secondary schools on the dangers of carrying a knife.

If you are concerned about someone you know carrying a knife, you can report it to Avon and Somerset Police by calling 101 or via their online form. Alternatively, you can also give information 100% anonymously via Crimestoppers, either online of by calling 0800 555 111.

You can find out more about the community bleed kits being rolled out across Avon and Somerset by visiting