Survival blankets designed to treat troops on the front line are being used for new born babies making an emergency dash to hospital.
Delivery company Delsol has landed the contract to distribute the baby blankets, made by Bethesda-based Blizzard Survival, for ambulance crews across Wales and in London.
The Blizzard Baby Wraps are used by paramedics, community midwives and air ambulance teams to care for babies born prematurely or who are an emergency delivery.
The tiny wrap, which weighs just 55 grammes, expands into a 65 cm long pouch that helps to ensure the baby’s temperature is regulated until they can reach specialist neonatal care at hospital.
The baby wraps were developed by Blizzard Survival in conjunction with the London Ambulance Service, and now the majority of ambulance service crews carry them, together with helicopter search and rescue crews.
Caernarfon-based parcels and pallets specialist Delsol transports the baby wraps to Blizzard’s wholesale supplier, for distribution out to ambulance depots around the country.
The company was chosen by Blizzard for the deliveries thanks to its track record on rapid delivery and excellent customer service.
The wrap is based on Blizzard’s award-winning survival blanket, used by troops in war-zones and peace-time training, along with mountain rescue teams, fire and police crews for emergencies, plus outdoor pursuits and water sports fans.
Blizzard Survival general manager Simon Carter said more than 17,000 of the vacuum-packed baby blanket pouches have been already been used around the UK by the Welsh Ambulance Service, London Ambulance and Bristow Search and Rescue Helicopters,
He explained: “The blankets are made from our Reflexcell material, which is triple layered, and are recommended for use in pre-hospital trauma life support. Although it is very lightweight and an extremely small package, it’s like wrapping somebody in an autumn duvet – the tog rating is around eight.”
“The waterproof blanket uses passive warmth to treat hypothermia – as the blanket warms the patient, they give off heat and in turn this warm, still, air is trapped, providing insulation. Therefore an even temperature is maintained, so the patient doesn’t overheat.
“It is also used by troops to treat injuries. When you lose blood you can quickly become hypothermic, which causes your blood to stop clotting triggering even more blood. The blanket prevents this from happening while the patient is being transported to a medical centre.
“We always hope that the Blizzard Baby Wrap products will never be needed – but unfortunately babies aren’t always born on their due date when mum is safely in hospital or with a midwife at home. For this reason Blizzard Baby Wraps are also carried by paramedics.
“The midwife or paramedic wraps the baby inside a cotton blanket and then puts the child into the Blizzard Baby Wrap, whilst they are en-route to hospital. It’s far better to prevent hypothermia than have to treat it afterwards, especially when the baby may have other medical complications as well. The wraps are single use, very easy to open and use and take up very little space in emergency maternity packs.”
“We are always seeking new orders and hope that more emergency services will become involved.”
Delsol uses its partner delivery networks in the UK and internationally to ensure Blizzard Survivals products reach customers rapidly, said joint managing director Tony Parry.
“We carry a massive range of items for our customers, around the UK and across the world.
“Our network of distribution hubs ensure that the parcels we collect from our clients reach their customers extremely quickly.
“I am delighted that we are working with such a well-regarded manufacturer, as Blizzard – especially Delsol originally began as a company in Bethesda – and helping them ensure their products continue to save lives, from new born babies to military personnel and the general public in an emergency.”
Simon, who previously worked with Halen Mon sea salt, added: “I have used Delsol for many years for deliveries, and found them to be very reliable, at the right price and with excellent customer service.
“It’s essential for us as a business to use a delivery company that meets the exacting demands of our customers in the health, emergency and military sectors, and that’s why we chose Delsol.”
Engineer and mountaineer Derek Ryden founded Blizzard Survival, and has spent 15 years developing the company’s Reflexcell material, which provides precedented thermal performance in the most demanding conditions.
The Refelxcell reflective surfaces block radiated heat whilst the elastic ensures the material hugs the body, stopping drafts, reducing convection and keeping the material right next to the patient where it is needed.
The outer layer is completely waterproof and windproof and so, unlike most other insulating materials, Reflexcell works just as efficiently when wet.
Delsol was originally founded in Bethesda in 1999 by Tony Parry and Simon Walker. They opened a purpose-built delivery depot and warehouse facility in nearby Caernarfon in 2003, and six years later launched a second depot in Sandycroft, Deeside, Flintshire.
More details about the company at www.deliverysolutions.uk.com, or call 01248 679933 or 01244 525090.