Public Works employees have finished training the use of automated external defibrillators and CPR. That means just about every city worker now has skills to deal with a life-threatening medical incident.
Snowplow drivers, for instance, are in position to see a number of weather-related incidents - such as people collapsing while shoveling their driveways, Deputy Chief James Case said. An AED can be used to a shock a person's heart back into rhythm and keep him or her alive until paramedics arrive.
In the future, the Fire Department hopes to extend those life-saving lessons to the public, Case added.
In the meantime, the Fire Department is taking donations and seeking grant money to equip more of its vehicles with AEDs, Fire Chief Rob Ugaste said.
"We did a great job of getting AEDs in the police patrol cars, but not in our own vehicles," he said.
The front line fire response vehicles - fire engines and ambulances - have AEDs.
However, Case and Assistant Fire Chief Scott Erke are certified paramedics and other department managers are EMTs. They come across emergencies while out on the road on and off duty and may be able to help.
Luther Manor has offered to purchased an AED and will provide a donation of $1,600, Ugaste said.
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