Two members of the security team at the Concourse Shopping Centre in Skelmersdale have been praised, after using their first aid training to help save a member of the public’s life.
Security officers Paul Pritchard and Colin Marshall dashed to the aid of a shopper who suffered a cardiac arrest outside Cash Generator on December 27, just after 4.45pm. They not only performed cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR), but also used one of the two defibrillator machines located in the Concourse to help resuscitate the person before paramedics arrived on the scene.
Gary Mitchell, Centre manager, said: “Paul and Colin, security manager Alex Wilkins, who was in the control room, liaising with the ambulance and the team on the ground, and other officers, did a superb job in what were very upsetting and challenging circumstances. They bravely saved this individual’s life in a calm and professional way, using all their first aid training and expertise.
“There’s no doubt that having the defibrillators on site helped to save their life and I’m grateful for the fact that we had two installed in the centre in April last year. We’ve not had to use either defibrillator before, but this incident brings home just how essential they are.”
Gary also praised the actions of fellow shoppers, after a young girl called the emergency services on a mobile phone before passing it to the security officers so they could speak to the operators, while another shopper paid for a blanket from Wilko’s to help keep the patient warm. Nurses from the nearby walk-in centre also assisted the security officers by undertaking further life-saving treatments.
Alex Wilkins, security manager, added: “The security officers undergo regular training to ensure their first aid and defibrillator knowledge are up to date and while they said they were just doing their job, I’m proud that they put all their training into action.”
A spokesperson for North West Ambulance Service said: “In the event of a cardiac arrest, there are only a vital few minutes in which there’s a chance to save their life as every minute without CPR and defibrillation reduces chances of survival by up to 10 per cent.
“This is why it is so important for people in the community to learn simple life-saving skills as starting CPR as soon as possible, even before an ambulance is able to get there, can dramatically improve a patient’s chance of survival.
“It’s important for people to remember that they cannot make someone in cardiac arrest any worse and not to be afraid to start CPR should they need to.
“Anyone willing to take action to help someone in a life-threatening emergency should be commended.
“The more life-saving defibrillators that are accessible to the public and registered with the ambulance service, the better as our emergency medical dispatchers can supply information on their whereabouts and how to access them when needed.”
Photograph (l-r): Security officers Martyn Hoare, Paul Pritchard, Derek Washington, Security Manager Alex Wilkins, and Colin Marshall.