Visitors to Anderby Creek could one day owe their lives to kind-hearted residents who have raised money to buy a defibrillator for the resort.
The life-saving equipment has been installed on the outside wall of Popa’s Bar, in Sea Road, but it is already up and running and available inside should it be needed.
Owners of the bar Andy and Sam Bunting decided to raise money for a defibrillator because the village did not have one.
Andy said: “The village is a coastal holiday resort and gets very busy, with thousands of people coming here to stay as well as walkers and cyclists.
“There was an incident at one of the caravan parks about three years ago which got us thinking. The Willoughby Arms got one about three months ago and it has already saved a life.
“So far the closest ones have been at Anderby Village Hall and Chapel St Leonards, but they are two miles away and when a heart attack happens it is important the person is treated as quickly as possible.”
Defibrillators give a high energy electric shock to the heart to restore a more stable rhythm. Every minute without CPR (cardiopulmonary resuscitation) and defibrillation reduces someone’s chance of survival by 10 per cent.
Public access to the equipment is becoming more widely available in public places such as local shopping centres, gyms, train stations and village halls.
The briefcase-sized box on the wall where one is available contains a PAD, which is simple and safe to use, with clear spoken directions once the user has dialled 999.
Residents had to raise £1,400 for the defibrillator to be installed at Anderby Creek. Some £1,000 came from the proceeds of tombolas and raffles at the bar, £200 from a donation by Ravenna Chalet Park, and the rest was made up by Andy and Sam.
It is being installed for free by Smith and Booth Electricians.
Andy and Sam are currently on holiday in Corfu but on their return will be organising training for anyone who is interested. “Some people might like training but it is very easy to use,” said Andy.
Adam Brown, of The Willoughby Arms, recalled the incident in June where a life was saved shortly after a defibrillator was installed at the pub.
He said: “I have used the defibrillator and it is very easy to operate. The life-saving impact of this device really hit home when one of our customers had a heart attack in our pub garden and we used the defibrillator on them.
“The paramedic made it clear to us how without it, CPR on its own may not have been enough to help the patient.”