Police armed to save lives

FIREARMS officers from Suffolk police were today due to meet with representatives from the British Heart Foundation to launch a lifesaving project.

FIREARMS officers from Suffolk police were today due to meet with representatives from the British Heart Foundation to launch a lifesaving project.

Officers have been given defibrillators, partly funded by the heart charity, so they can be called on to help at heart attack emergencies.

The police attend patients when they can reach them quicker than ambulance crews from the East of England Ambulance Service.

Rob Lawrence, the service's chief operating officer for Suffolk, said: “We train police armed response units in basic life support and trauma incidents and the partnership has now developed to them carrying defibrillators.

“Statistics tell us it is only a matter of time before they arrive on scene, defibrillate a patient and save a life.”

John Fletcher, Suffolk police's acting assistant chief constable, said: “The armed response teams are on constant patrol across the county and on occasions can respond quicker if they are closer than an ambulance crew.

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“The new equipment and the extra training will enable our officers to save lives across the county.”

Brenda Clabburn, from the British Heart Foundation, said: “Early treatment for heart attack victims undoubtedly gives them a much better chance of survival.”