Company buys life-saving AED

Graeme Watson with St John Ambulance AED trainer Debbie Renton.
Graeme Watson with St John Ambulance AED trainer Debbie Renton.

A Cramlington engineering firm has made the potentially life saving decision to install an Automated External Defibrillator (AED).

Algernon Precision Engineering, based at Nelson Industrial Estate, has purchased the AED – equipment that can shock the heart to restart after a cardiac arrest – from St John Ambulance.

The company is believed to be the first organisation on the Nelson Industrial Estate to install an AED, and decided to make the purchase after the sudden death of a friend of the managing director, who tragically died of a heart attack on a golf course.

MD Graeme Watson said: “Having witnessed a totally unexpected tragedy which could possibly have been avoided, I feel very strongly that employers have a duty of care to their staff and visitors.

“Anyone in any type of environment can have a heart attack but it is too late to buy an AED if someone is suffering a cardiac arrest; you need one near at hand, there and then.

“Although the AED is easy to use, nine of us have been thoroughly trained in its use. It talks you through what to do and contains fail-safes to ensure improper use cannot take place.

“Given their great success rate in saving lives, I think the use of AEDs should be far more widespread.”

Tom Dawson, workplace training key account co-ordinator with St John Ambulance, said: “Access to an AED can truly be the difference between a life lost and life saved and we applaud how seriously Algernon Precision Engineering is taking first aid.”