Bedfordshire Fire and Rescue Service were called to reports of a cardiac arrest in Leighton Buzzard on Saturday (1 August). During the pandemic, firefighters have volunteered to support East of England Ambulance Service (EEAST), as part of a co-responding initiative. Firefighters, who have been trained with EEAST, have been attending emergency incidents of this nature.
At just after 1pm, Crew Commander Michael Rankin and On-Call Firefighter Glen Childs, arrived at the incident to find rapid response paramedic, Penny Prestedge, giving life-saving care.
The crew assisted the paramedic fitting all the monitoring equipment to allow the paramedic to assess the patient.
Crew Commander Michael Rankin said: “On arrival, it was quickly determined that the man was not breathing but had a heartbeat and his breathing quickly needed to be assisted.
“Penny guided us like a true professional and, using the equipment we had been expertly trained on by EEAST, were able to establish an airway and support the man’s breathing.”
Both firefighters were prepared in wearing level 3 protective equipment, so were quickly able to deliver ventilations, freeing the paramedic to give the relevant medications.
Firefighter Glen Childs said: “In working together, we were able to support in delivering emergency life-saving treatment. As a result, the man recovered well on scene and was taken to hospital for continued observations and recovery.”
Penny, who is based in Leighton Buzzard, said: “We work really closely with the fire service in Leighton, as their crews are specially trained to co-respond to the most serious incidents alongside our paramedics.
“I cannot praise them enough. Mike and Glen were brilliant and definitely helped to save this young man’s life. But it’s not just on this job that our firefighter colleagues make a difference – they are always more than happy to do whatever they can to help and we’re really grateful for their support.”
Station Commander Rob Hulatt said: “The collaboration work with our fellow Blue Light partners is key to protecting and saving our Bedfordshire Communities. This incident demonstrates the effectiveness of joint working, the professionalism of our firefighters and the effective training delivered by EEAST.
“I am proud of the firefighters at Leighton Buzzard for their willingness to go above and beyond in helping our communities and for their quick response on this incident to delivering trauma care.”