Tuesday, 24 October 2017

Lifesavers launch £13,000 appeal for vehicle

SONNING Common community first responders are raising money for a new vehicle.

SONNING Common community first responders are raising money for a new vehicle.

The responders are trained volunteers who attend emergency incidents to administer first aid before an ambulance arrives.

They are trying to raise £13,000 for a 4x4 vehicle which will have NHS and South Central Ambulance Service logos on it and have already collected £5,000.

First respondent Christine Brook, of Cooper Pightle, Kidmore End, said: “At the moment we all use our own cars to cover an area within five miles of where we live.

“The big difference the new vehicle would make is that we can go off road because currently when the weather is bad we make ourselves unavailable.



“The new vehicle would be marked so it would be obvious why we were parked somewhere and it would help the ambulance find us as well. It would also mean we could carry more equipment and be trained in gas and air pain relief.”

Adam Negus, of Elm Court, Sonning Common, and Sue Abbot, of Wood Lane, Sonning Common, are the other members of the group.

The calls they answer include potentially life-threatening incidents such as strokes, breathing difficulties, severe allergic reactions and cardiac arrest.

Mrs Brook said: “There are certainly cases where I can say that if I hadn’t been there someone would have died.

“I can think of two cases, both involving anaphylactic shock, where I helped save lives.

“One person didn’t have time to administer an EpiPen so I did that for them. The other wasn’t aware of their allergies so when I turned up I administered oxygen which kept them alive.”

First responders carry an NHS kit which includes a defibrillator, resuscitation pump, oxygen and medical aspirin. Their target is to respond to calls within eight minutes.

They operate within a five-mile radius of their homes but are often sent further if they are the closest person available to respond.

The Sonning Common responders have been given a £1,000 grant by the parish council.

Councillor Chrissie Phillips-Tilbury said: “They provide an extremely important service and we really are very fortunate to have this vital unit in Sonning Common. We hope this grant will encourage other parish councils within the first responders’ catchment area to follow suit.”

The Red Lion pub in Peppard Common has agreed to run quizzes to help raise funds.



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