The Blackburn-based device situated on Whalley Road in Wilpshire which was paid for through fundraising efforts of local residents will now no longer be available for people in the nearby area to use in an emergency.
In the event of a cardiac arrest, where a patient suddenly becomes unconscious and stops breathing, every single second counts. Patients have a significantly higher chance of survival if a bystander intervenes by dialling 999, performing CPR and accessing a public access defibrillator before the ambulance arrives.
Community Resuscitation Manager for Cumbria and Lancashire, Cheryl Pickstock said: “We are appalled by this heinous crime. The defibrillator being out of action really could mean the difference between life and death and the fact that it has been damaged and the defibrillator stolen is soul destroying.
“It costs a community approximately £1,500 to purchase and place a public access defibrillator but the cost of lives that could potentially be saved is immeasurable. In the event of a cardiac arrest, every minute a defibrillator is not used can reduce someone’s chance of survival by 10%.”
CPADs are strategically placed in cabinets at various locations . In the event of an emergency, dial 999 and if a nearby defibrillator is available and required the emergency medical dispatcher will provide directions and instructions on how to access it..
Once used, defibrillators should be promptly returned so that they can be available for future emergencies. This can be done by calling the number on the tag or emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
Cheryl continues: “The community will now sadly have to once more rely on the generosity of local fundraisers to assist with the replacement of this device. If any local businesses or organisations would like to contribute to the cost of the replacement they can get in touch using the email address above.”
The theft and damage has been reported to the police and anyone with any information should call 101.