What does TWELVE FLAPS stand for?

TWELVE FLAPS is a mnemonic / acronym used to remember the assessment of a casualty’s airway and breathing.

TWELVE FLAPS is often taught to paramedics and ambulance staff, but may also be taught on some advanced first aid courses.


The TWELVE component lists some common signs to look out for when performing an examination of a casualty’s chest:

T – Tracheal deviation
W – Wounds and bleeding
E – surgical Emphysema
L – Laryngeal crepitus / injury
V – distended neck Veins
E – Expose and examine the chest


Assess the chest (looking for the signs listed above – TWELVE) using the following methods: 

F – Feel
L – Look
A – Auscultate
P – Percuss
S – Search the sides and backTWELVE FLAPS

John Furst

JOHN FURST is an experienced emergency medical technician and qualified first aid and CPR instructor. John is passionate about first aid and believes everyone should have the skills and confidence to take action in an emergency situation.

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