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When CPR is needed, instinct kicks in

When CPR is needed, instinct kicks in

Brad had no idea that he’d be saving someone’s life when he arrived at Thorndon Club to play squash on Sunday 24 May.

Brad and Mark

Brad had just finished a game when he was approached by another staff member who’d asked him to go check on someone who’d collapsed.

However, this person needed help urgently as they were actually having a cardiac arrest.

Thankfully Brad had been a volunteer firefighter for 16 years and was trained in basic first aid – as well as CPR.

“In this moment it was instinct that kicked in,” Brad explains.

“When I saw them I knew that something wasn’t right. I got someone to start doing chest compressions while I managed the person’s airway, swapping over when we needed.”

Brad had to think fast; he’d dialed 111 and was listening carefully to the Emergency Medical Call Taker while someone went and got the club’s Automated External Defibrillator (AED).

With the person still unresponsive, the AED stated it was time to shock the patient. Ensuring everyone was clear, one shock was delivered. Those on the ground helping then carried on with CPR.

After few more minutes, another shock was needed. Following this one the person’s heart began to beat for itself.

Brad knows that seconds count in a cardiac arrest. He also knows that although the AED at the Thorndon Club had never been used, having it on site was crucial.

“If we hadn’t acted fast that person would probably not be here today. Our AED cost $3000 and if you ask me $3000 for a life is 100 per cent worth it.”

Wellington Free Ambulance Paramedic and Shift Manager Mark was first on scene – followed closely by two other ambulance crews.

“Everything Brad had done had prevented the patient getting worse. Everyone did a brilliant job stabilising the patient; what Brad and his team did helped the patient survive,” Mark says.


Knowing how to do CPR could save the life of a family member, friend or colleague – and you never know when you’ll need it, so it’s best to be prepared.

Our Heartbeat community CPR training programme is FREE thanks to the support of the Lloyd Morrison Foundation. To book a session or to find out, go to https://wfa.org.nz/heartbeat.



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