It was a hot summers day last year in June, Lisa and Nathaniel were walking home from the shops when Lisa started to feel her chest tightening up.
Lisa tried her best to remain calm but was very aware her asthma had been playing up a couple of days previous. When they got home things went from bad to worse as Lisa couldn’t catch her breath, she started to panic as it was only her and Nathaniel at home at the time. As her airways started to close, she couldn’t speak, and Nathaniel stepped in.
Nathaniel immediately picked up their house phone and dialled 999 and explained to emergency call handler what was happening, giving their address. Lisa says: “When I first moved into my new house, it was just me and Nathaniel. I remember there being a phone wire at the top of my stairs and my foot getting caught. I ended up falling down the stairs.
“Luckily, I was okay and not hurt but it made me think if something serious happens and it is just the two of us, I need to make sure Nathaniel is prepared. I started to teach him what he should call 999 for, how to do so and helped him to memorise our address.
“When an ambulance went past, and we could hear the sirens I would broach the subject of calling 999 with him so he knew it wasn’t a scary thing to do. I made him aware that ambulances are there to help people.
“Never in a million years did I think he would have to do it or was sure if he would as he is such a timid little boy but when it counted, he really put his learning to the test. I am so proud of him.”
Teaching our children and future generations the right reason to call 999 could save a life – we have had callers as young as four call us because their parent is unconscious.
We are asking parents and guardians to make sure they take five minutes to sit down with their children and explain when to call 999, especially if the adult is not awake. It is important that children know their address and postcode so that if they need to call 999 we can get an ambulance to them as quickly as possible.
Make sure your children know:
- how to call 999
- their home address
- how to open the front door in an emergency
To access all the information your child needs about calling 999 visit – what happens when you call 999.