Automated External Defibrillators Installed At All NI Fire Stations

Life-saving Automated External Defibrillators (AEDs) have been installed at all Fire Stations across Northern Ireland.

The proactive measure highlights Northern Ireland Fire & Rescue Service (NIFRS) commitment to saving lives, with defibrillators now located in 67 Fire Stations across Northern Ireland and at NIFRS HQ in Lisburn.

Studies show that early intervention with defibrillators within 3 to 5 minutes of a cardiac arrest can lead to survival rates in excess of 50%.

NIFRS Chief Fire & Rescue Officer Aidan Jennings said: "We are delighted to announce that we have installed defibrillators at all of our Fire Stations.

"Our stations are at the centre of the community which makes them easily accessible to the public and will enhance the availability of initial emergency equipment in the event of a cardiac arrest. NIFRS stands as a key pillar in facilitating public use of defibrillators."

The equipment is intended for public use for anyone to access at Fire Stations in an emergency.

Each of the defibrillators has been added to 'The Circuit', which means that – where appropriate – NIAS (Northern Ireland Ambulance Service) Ambulance Control can direct members of the public to retrieve the nearest available device to help someone in cardiac arrest.
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Health Minister Robin Swann said: "This is very welcome news for communities right across Northern Ireland. We know that every second counts when someone has a cardiac arrest and getting prompt access to a defibrillator, alongside CPR, will give them the best chance of survival.

"That's why the investment by the Northern Ireland Fire & Rescue Service is so important. It means there are now an additional 68 defibrillators installed across the region, available to the public for use in an emergency situation.

"The Fire & Rescue Service provides a vital service to the public 24/7 and I want to commend them for making this hugely important investment."

Chairperson of the NIFRS Board, Jay Colville, said: "Our commitment to equipping every Fire Station with a defibrillator is a testament to our dedication to public safety across Northern Ireland and our role as a vital player in the collective effort to save lives during emergencies."

CEO at Resuscitation Council UK, James Cant, said: "Defibrillators help save lives and anyone can use one. They tell you exactly what to do, no training is needed. If someone is having a cardiac arrest, it simply needs to be switched on and it will talk the person through each step – it's like having an expert in the room."

Chief Executive at Northern Ireland Ambulance Service, Michael Bloomfield, added: "We welcome the initiative by NIFRS to have Public Access Defibrillators available at each of their Fire Stations. As one of the four key steps in the chain of survival, early defibrillation plays an important role in increasing the chances of survival for someone who has suffered a cardiac arrest."

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