2:33pm Friday 12th April 2013
By Jon Robinson
A FIRST aid instructor is campaigning to get defibrillators installed in shops and public buildings in the Ribble Valley.
Audra Banks, 46, from Gisburn, is starting by working with the village’s parish council in her drive to help distribute the machines across the area to shops and public areas.
She said: “Loads of lives could potentially be saved if more places had one.
“I’ve been at schools where they have had cases of pupils, and parents who are waiting for their kids to finish lessons, die because the school didn’t have one.
“Those sorts of deaths could so easily be avoided by having the machines in places like the local corner shop.
“I really want to get these machines in more public places and shops and I hope that the parish council agree with me because they will help to save so many lives.”
Mrs Banks is visiting Oasis Academy in Salford today, along with former footballer Fabrice Muamba, who suffered a heart attack, and SADS UK, the sudden arrhythmic death syndrome charity, to hand over defibrillators to the school’s head teacher.
“What happened to Fabrice Muamba has had a massive effect and so many more people are aware of their uses now, but not enough people and most of them think they are too expensive to get,” said Mrs Banks.
This week she is leading a three-day training course at MDA in Blackburn instructing members of staff in first aid and how to use a defibrillator.
Antony Higgins, 44, from Blackburn, who took the training sessions, said: “I now feel that I would be able to do the right thing to help a person in need.
“We have covered a lot of topics and I feel comfortable that I know what I need to do.”
Anne Jolly, founder of SADS UK, said: “Using CPR alone provides a five per cent chance of survival but using CPR along with the defibrillator increases the chance of survival to over 50 per cent.”
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