LAS PARAMEDICS CELEBRATE 10 YEARS OF CYCLING TO SAVE LIVES AT HEATHROW AIRPORT
December 3, 2014
By Journal Staff
Nine years ago, on Aug. 6, 2005, London Ambulance Service (LAS) (England) cycle medic Mick Hampson reached cardiac victim Graham Clark within seconds of a 9-9-9 call and was able to restart his heart after three attempts, using the portable defibrillator carried on ambulance bicycles.
“I was definitely in the right place at the right time,” Hampson said (in a story posted on the LAS website). “The fact that we are based here and I was able to get to him so quickly most probably made the difference between life and death.”
Clark and Hampson were reunited this past summer at the same terminal to celebrate the 10-year anniversary of the Heathrow Cycle Response Unit (CRU) and the 15 paramedics responding to 9-9-9 calls at the airport.
Clark, who still works at Heathrow, remembers little of the event.
“Everything went blank,” he said. “I’m so grateful to Mick and my colleagues. It’s as if I’ve been given a second chance.”
More than 4,000 of the 42,000 patients that CRU has treated over the past 10 years have been of a serious nature, including cardiac-related. During the program’s first year (2004-2005), cycle paramedics attended 473 incidents, a number that increased to 5,915 in 2013-2014. They treated nearly 75 percent of incidents on-scene without transportation.