71-year-old man saves best friend’s life with AED, CPR after heart attack

It was a normal day..

Bill Winness was walking his normal route through the Western Mall with his two friends the morning of April 5 when one started to feel dizzy. He urged Winness to keep going while he sat and rested for a bit.

Just minutes later, a woman came running after the 71-year-old and his friend, Ray Smidt, to tell them that their friend, Keith Clark, was suffering a heart attack.

They ran back as fast as they could. The next thing Winness knew, he was grabbing the Automated External Defibrillator (AED) inside the building while Smidt ran to Clark’s aid. Winness was by Clark’s side instantly after grabbing the AED.

Winness was trained how to use the AED, an electronic device that diagnoses a cardiac arrest, and how to apply electricity in the event of one, in addition to CPR training years ago. All he remembered were the basics, but that was enough.

Winness doesn’t remember panicking, just taking the steps he needed to save his best friend’s life.

“I guess you just do whatever you have to do, you know? You don’t really think about it,” Winness said.

The first step in using the AED was to apply adhesive strips to Clark’s chest for the AED to read what should be done. Since Clark had a pacemaker, the AED just instructed Winness to give CPR. He started chest compressions while another bystander stood on the line with a 9-1-1 dispatcher.

What Winness did helped provide the necessary oxygen to Clark’s brain and helped his heart pump blood while they waited for emergency responders.

It was only minutes, but what he did was vital to preserving Clark’s well-being, according to Scott Christensen, director of clinical service for Patient Care EMS.

“It buys time,” Christensen said. “That time it takes for someone to call for help until first responders arrive, it’s important for someone trained in CPR to give that type of care and assistance. All of that together is what helped save Keith’s life.”

If Winness wasn’t there to give CPR before units arrived, Christensen speculated that Clark might have passed away.

Clark, 81, was released from the heart hospital Friday. He’s in relatively good condition and was advised by his doctor to “lay low” for a few weeks.

This was Clark’s second heart attack, and he’s been suffering episodes for half his life. Winness and Clark talked about what they would do if this happened. They were prepared as much as they could be.

“We all knew where the defibrillator was mounted. We walk by it every day,” Clark said. “I think everybody should know CPR. It probably doesn’t hurt if everybody knew where these AEDs were either.”

Bystanders in Sioux Falls helped give CPR for 73 percent of cardiac arrests in 2017, according to Regional Emergency Medical Services Authority.

It’s common for bystanders to take action in Sioux Falls, just as Bill took charge to help Clark. Nationally though, the REMSA registry’s average is action from bystanders in 38 percent of cardiac arrests.

Part of that is because of wide CPR training in the Sioux Falls area and because of dispatchers instructing 9-1-1 callers how to give CPR. The high rate of bystander help can also be attributed to Sioux Falls Fire Rescue’s Pulsepoint app, which alerts people when CPR is needed nearby.

“Any CPR is better than no CPR,” Christensen said.

For AEDs, it’s 28 percent of bystanders who intervene with the device in Sioux Falls. About 11 percent of bystanders across the registry intervened with an AED in 2017.

There isn’t a standard on how to provide signs for AEDs, Christensen said. Clark worries there needs to be better ways to inform people where the AEDs are — it could mean life or death.


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Source: https://www.argusleader.com/story/news/crime/2019/04/09/71-year-old-man-saves-best-friends-life-aed-cpr-after-heart-attack/3380193002/

Teen used CPR to save her little sister’s life

Claire Taylor had learned CPR through the Girl Scouts. It’s a valuable lesson in preparedness.

Claire Taylor was babysitting her younger sister in their Ocean Township home when the unthinkable happened.

When Sarah Taylor, then 12, bent over to pet the family cat, she collapsed to the floor. She was having a cardiac arrest.

“For a second I stood there watching her, in shock, and then I opened the front door and yelled for help,” recalled Claire, who was 16 at time. “Then I called 911, I started praying and then I started CPR.”

As a middle-schooler, Claire had learned CPR while getting her babysitting certification through the Girl Scouts.

“I learned on Cabbage Patch kids,” she said.

It saved Sarah’s life. First responders arrived within minutes and fully revived her with a defibrillator. This was in November 2017. Sixteen months later, Sarah is doing great and Claire has received two big honors.

The first, the Girl Scouts’ Medal of Honor, was bestowed this past November. Claire was one of just 16 recipients nationwide in 2018.

“The words we have in our mission statement — courage, confidence and character — I think Claire demonstrated those with what she did in that extreme situation,” said Dena Mayo, director of community engagement for Girl Scouts of the Jersey Shore. “It’s wonderful to see the Girl Scout program in action. This was a great real-life example.”

The second, a Young Hero award from the American Legion Auxiliary for New Jersey, was presented last weekend by national auxiliary president Kathy Dungan.

“Claire is very humble; she didn’t think she deserved the award,” said Doreen Gallagher, past state president for the American Legion Auxiliary for New Jersey. “She looked at it as, she did what she was taught.”

The public accolades serve a key function, aside from celebrating a lifesaving act. They reinforce the need to train teens in CPR.

“It’s important to be able to provide this kind of information to our youth, so if something happens they’re prepared,” Gallagher said. “The more they know, the better.”

Looking back on the crucible moment, Claire Taylor emphasized that prayer kept her calm, and credits her faith for keeping her strong. Now a 17-year-old senior at Red Bank Regional High School, she has valuable advice for her peers.

“It’s definitely worthwhile to have some sort of (emergency response) background,” she said. “When the moment does arrive, if it does, you can focus on taking action with what you already know.”

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Source: https://www.app.com/story/news/local/values/2019/03/14/cpr-girl-scouts/3150486002/

Ohio pizza employees use CPR to save co-worker’s life

Gibson Gaynesbloom, 63, went into cardiac arrest March 5 while working at a Little Caesars in New Philadelphia, the television station reported.

His co-workers sprang into action. Keralyn Songer, 34, called paramedics. Nicole Strong, 35, who told WJW she learned CPR in high school, cleared Gaynesbloom’s air passage and put him on his back. Brody Ferris, who learned CPR last summer — “I only had three lifeguarding classes at the YMCA,” he told WJW — also helped out.

Strong continued mouth-to-mouth resuscitation until paramedics arrived, the television station reported.

Gaynesbloom was taken to a hospital and had emergency surgery that saved his life, WJW reported. He is expected to make a full recovery.“They essentially started to save my life. Thank you so much. Thank you all and thank you, everyone,” Gaynesbloom told the television station. “I’ve got children and grandchildren. I want to see them grow up.”

Andrea Tyson, who owns the pizza shop, threw a party for the trio Friday and gave them gift cards, WJW reported.

“The conversation I had with the three of them was that I believe that if one of them was not trained in CPR, then I don’t think he would be here today. I know he wouldn’t be here,” Tyson told the television station.


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Source: https://www.ajc.com/news/ohio-pizza-employees-use-cpr-save-worker-life/1aRlJkF2H2n9rHWM29jIOM/

CPR/First Aid Training – Are you CPR Ready To Save A Life?

Anyone can learn CPR, are your employees trained to save a life? 

UniFirst First Aid + Safety offers weekly CPR classes for companies and groups, UniFirst First Aid + Safety’s CPRAED and First Aid training program will help employers meet OSHA and other federal and state regulatory requirements for training employees how to respond and care for medical emergencies at work.

This 2-year certification course conforms to the 2015 AHA Guidelines Update for CPR and ECC, and the 2015 AHA and ARC Guidelines Update for First Aid.

CPR classes are a great team building opportunity!


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Learn Life Saving CPR Now – You Never Know When You Will Need It

Anyone can learn CPR, are your employees trained to save a life? 

UniFirst First Aid + Safety offers weekly CPR classes for companies and groups, UniFirst First Aid + Safety’s CPRAED, and First Aid training program will help employers meet OSHA and other federal and state regulatory requirements for training employees how to respond and care for medical emergencies at work.

This 2-year certification course conforms to the latest AHA Guidelines Update for CPR and ECC, and the latest AHA and ARC Guidelines Update for First Aid.

CPR classes are a great team-building opportunity!


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Head Injury – What You Need To Know

Knowing the symptoms of a concussion and some simple first aid can help people respond to a head injury quickly, reducing the chances of complications.

Head injuries range from a bump on the head to a skull fracture. Some head injuries are severe enough to cause brain damage or even death.


A head injury may present different symptoms.

There are a range of head injury types, and the injury can be more or less severe within each category.

traumatic brain injury (TBI) happens when the brain is damaged, usually because of an accident. A person may have a TBI if an object hits their head, or if an object penetrates the brain through the skull.

Some examples include a ball hitting the head at high speed, falling from a great height onto the head, or having a gunshot wound.

Violent shaking of the head can also cause a TBI, as the brain can bounce or twist in the skull. These cases are often related to whiplash.

A TBI damages the brain, usually causing a blood clot or bruising. A blood clot in the brain is known as an intracranial hematoma (ICH).

An ICH can be more or less severe depending on its size and location in the brain.

A concussion is a form of TBI that temporarily stops the brain from functioning normally. Symptoms of a concussion are not always serious or long-lasting but may cause complications.

The skull is made of very hard, thick bone designed to protect the brain from injuries. However, it is possible to break or fracture the skull with a hard impact.

If the skull breaks and the bone or another object punctures the brain, a doctor will refer to the injury as an open head injury or penetrating head injury.


A head injury may present different symptoms depending on its severity.

Symptoms of a mild head injury include:

  • some bleeding
  • bruising
  • a mild headache
  • feeling sick or nauseated
  • mild dizziness

Symptoms of a moderate head injury include:

  • passing out for a short time
  • confusion or distraction
  • vomiting
  • a lasting headache
  • temporary changes in behavior
  • memory problems
  • loss of balance

Symptoms of a severe head injury include:

  • significant bleeding
  • passing out and not waking up
  • having a seizure
  • problems with vision, taste, or smell
  • difficulty staying alert or awake
  • clear fluid or blood coming out of the ears or nose
  • bruises behind the ears
  • weakness or numbness
  • difficulty speaking

Key symptoms of a concussion include:

  • confusion
  • a headache
  • dislike of noise or light
  • nausea
  • balance problems
  • blurred vision
  • feeling groggy
  • difficulty concentrating

Head injuries vs. minor bumps

A bump to the head is a common injury that does not usually cause serious problems. However, there is no clear point at which a doctor will class damage as a head injury.

It is usually possible to treat head injuries with mild or no symptoms at home. However, it is vital to know about the signs of a concussion and see a doctor if these develop.

When to see a doctor

Moderate and severe head injuries require immediate treatment. If the symptoms of a mild head injury last for more than 2 weeks, a person should also seek medical advice.

The symptoms of a concussion do not always appear immediately. Sometimes, a person may develop initial symptoms days or weeks after the injury.

People should always take head injuries seriously. If someone is concerned about their symptoms, even after a mild injury, they should speak to a doctor.

How do doctors diagnose a concussion?

A doctor will ask how the injury happened and about a person’s medical history. They will also look carefully at the head, face, and neck.

Concussions can often cause mental confusion. A doctor may ask questions or do tests to check a person’s memory, concentration, or problem-solving ability.

They may also use the Glasgow coma scale to diagnose a concussion. Doctors will examine and rate the following:

  • ability to open their eyes
  • ability to communicate
  • a motor response, such as bending an arm at the elbow

If a head injury is moderate or severe, it may be necessary to do a brain scan.

Treatment and first aid

A cold pack can help to reduce swelling.

People can often treat mild head injuries at home. Applying a cold pack to the area can help to reduce swelling.

A person can also take Tylenol but should avoid non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), such as ibuprofen and aspirin, unless a doctor prescribes them.

In the first 24 hours after a mild head injury, a person should ask someone to check on them regularly.

If a person loses consciousness or shows signs of confusion or memory loss, it is vital to see a doctor.

A person should avoid using drugs or alcohol, driving, or playing contact sports after a head injury. They may need to take time off work or school.

Severe head injuries require immediate medical attention. Anyone who sees someone with symptoms of a severe head injury should call 911 or their local emergency number.

It is best not to move a person with a severe head injury to avoid making their injuries worse. People should also not attempt to remove a person’s helmet if they are wearing one.

Severe head injuries often require a stay in the hospital, surgery, or long-term treatment.


Preventing head injuries is not always possible, but some steps can help reduce the risk. These include:

  • wearing a seatbelt when in a vehicle
  • wearing a helmet when cycling or using a motorcycle
  • following safety precautions when playing contact sports

A head injury can have lasting consequences, so it is essential to take precautions when necessary.

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Source: https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/322225.php


UniFirst First Aid + Safety cuts the ribbon on new facility as they grow and expand into the future.

Congrats are in order today! UniFirst First Aid + Safety opens a brand new state of the art 55,000 square-foot headquarters in St. Louis, MO.

“This new operation allows us to dramatically increase our warehousing and production capabilities to more efficiently supply and service our thousands of business customers throughout the country,” says Todd Lewis, vice president, UniFirst First Aid Group. “This new state-of-the-art operation, along with the additional square footage our new warehouse provides, also helps support our initiative to accelerate market expansion and service integration within our parent company’s growing customer base. Together with UniFirst’s 250-plus service locations and its core uniform and facility service supply business, UniFirst First Aid + Safety First Aid & Safety will help provide more customers with complete solutions for their uniform, facility service, and, now, first aid and safety needs.”


Pictured left to right: Mark Brune – Senior Director UniFirst First Aid Group, Todd Lewis – Vice President UniFirst First Aid Group & Josh Dubois – Director of sales UniFirst First Aid Group

The UniFirst First Aid + Safety team celebrates!


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Is Your Workplace Prone to Violence?

For Some Occupations, Violence is 3rd Leading Cause of Death

Every year, 2 million American workers report having been victims of workplace violence. In 2014, 409 people were fatally injured in work-related attacks, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. That’s about 16% of the 4,821 workplace deaths that year.

While roadway incidents are the No. 1 cause of death for workers overall, violence is the third leading cause for healthcare workers, and employees in professional and business services like education, law and media, according to Injury Facts 2016®. Taxi drivers, for example, are more than 20 times more likely to be murdered on the job than other workers, according to OSHA.

But make no mistake: Workplace violence can happen anywhere.

The Numbers are Alarming

According to the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, workplace violence falls into four categories: Criminal intent, customer/client, worker-on-worker and personal relationship, which overwhelmingly targets women.

Injury Facts lists data for workplace violence-related deaths, and injuries resulting in days off of work, across various occupations. Here are some statistics for 2013:

  • Government: 37,110 injuries, 128 deaths
  • Education and health services: 22,590 injuries, 35 deaths
  • Professional and Business Services: 4,460 injuries, 65 deaths
  • Retail: 2,680 injuries, 127 deaths
  • Leisure and hospitality: 2,380 injuries, 107 deaths
  • Financial activities: 1,100 injuries, 37 deaths
  • Transportation and warehousing: 840 injuries, 71 deaths
  • Construction: 680 injuries, 36 deaths
  • Manufacturing: 570 injuries, 36 deaths

No matter who initiaties the confrontation, the deadliest situations involve an active shooter. U.S. Department of Homeland Security defines active shooter as someone “actively engaged in killing or attempting to kill people in a confined and populated area.”

A lot can happen in the chaotic minutes before police arrive; DHS advises staying calm and exercising one of three options: Run, hide or fight.

  • If there is an accessible escape route, leave your belongings and get out
  • If evacuation is not possible, find a hiding place where you won’t be trapped should the shooter find you, lock and blockade the door, and silence your phone
  • As a last resort and only when your life is in imminent danger, attempt to incapacitate the shooter by throwing items, improvising weapons and yelling

Every Organization Needs to Address Workplace Violence

Managers and safety professionals at every workplace should develop a policy on violence that includes:

Know the Warning Signs

Some people commit violence because of revenge, robbery or ideology – with or without a component of mental illness. While there is no way to predict an attack, you can be aware of behaviors in coworkers that might signal future violence:

  • Excessive use of alcohol or drugs
  • Unexplained absenteeism, change in behavior or decline in job performance
  • Depression, withdrawal or suicidal comments
  • Resistance to changes at work or persistent complaining about unfair treatment
  • Violation of company policies
  • Emotional responses to criticism, mood swings
  • Paranoia

Most every “place” is somebody’s workplace. So whether you are a patron or an employee, it’s important to be alert.

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Source: https://www.nsc.org/work-safety/safety-topics/workplace-violence

Protecting Your Workplace Against Active Shooters

Active shooting incidents are increasing at an alarming rate. How will you protect your workers?

He was quiet, such a nice guy. He kept to himself. He didn’t socialize much. Does that sound familiar?

Neighbors, coworkers, friends of active shooting perpetrators typically describe the person to the media as a nice person in the days following a mass casualty incident. They typically don’t recognize the behaviors and actions of a person planning an act of workplace violence.

“The average worker does not snap overnight – that’s Hollywood,” says Al Shenouda, a former law enforcement tactical commander and security advisor with the Department of Homeland Security and speaker at EHS Today’s 2018 Safety Leadership Conference.

Workplace violence is more likely to occur in places without policies or managers who understand what types of behaviors lead to an event. So, what can a safety professional do to effectively train workers to spot acts of incivility, discontent and changes in a person they see on a daily basis?

Early Recognition

Having an “it’ll never happen to me” mentality is a surefire way to be unprepared when an act of workplace violence occurs, Shenouda says.

Shenouda, along with other subject matter experts, provides organizations with insights and tactics on preventing and surviving an active shooter situation.

The value of early recognition, or seeing changes in a worker and addressing them, is the first step to prevention.

“Establish an early warning system,” says Gino Soave, Niles Industrial Coatings’ corporate safety director and speaker at EHS Today’s 2018 Safety Leadership Conference. “No threat is too small. Words always precede actions.”

Changes in behavior should be reported to a supervisor. For example, introverted workers that begin to voice their opinions in an aggressive manner, or an employee that is more extroverted and seem withdrawn could potentially plan to retaliate.

Soave notes 12 particular behaviors that could lead to an act of workplace violence:

      1. Temper tantrums
      2. Excessive absenteeism
      3. Decrease in productivity
      4. Testing limits
      5. Disrespect for authority
      6. Verbalizes negative action/harm
      7. Sabotage/theft
      8. Numbers and intensity of arguments rise
      9. Intense anger
     10. Social withdrawal
     11. Suicidal threats
     12. Property destruction

When it comes down to it, every employee should have some type of basic awareness training, Shenouda says.

Company policy for escalating behaviors should reiterate a no-tolerance policy. If a threat or incivility occurs, a worker should immediately alert a direct supervisor. The supervisor should report the behavior to human resources or safety representative, who will then take the appropriate steps to address the individual.

“Most workers don’t understand the ins and outs of a prevention program,” Shenouda says. “You want to save lives? Do basic awareness training. When things start getting unglued, what are you going to do?”


Respond and Save

The “hot potato” scenario often leads to an active shooting.

Employees who see changes in a fellow worker will begin avoiding the person, acting like nothing is happening, denies anything is wrong or brushes it off as something that is not part of their job responsibilities, Soave says.

“Has society trained us not to get involved if something doesn’t directly affect us?” he questions.

These changes and the subsequent lack of response are the catalysts for escalated behaviors. However, once an active shooting takes place, employees cannot sit back and every single one needs to be trained to respond accordingly.

“Most mass shooting incidents last three to five minutes,” Shenouda says.

“They’re looking for body count. More people are getting killed now by active shooters than in history.”

An effective basic training program should not only include preventing an incident, but it should also include situational awareness, survival training, and first aid techniques.

“In an emergency situation, paramedics and law enforcement are not the first responders,” Soave says. “Citizens are the first responders.”

Staying a step ahead of danger is key. Have workers identify spaces that provide a vantage point, rooms in which they could barricade themselves and tools and common items they can use as weapons. Because a person can succumb to an injury before law enforcement arrives, techniques such as improvising a tourniquet and stopping blood loss should be taught.

“The key is to try to get out in front of these acts,” Soave recommends. “Keep an open line of communication and keep training exciting. This falls under OSHA’s general duty clause. It’s no different than what you do every day.”

Source: https://www.ehstoday.com/emergency-management/protecting-your-workplace-against-active-shooters


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Man dies twice, lives to tell his story

Dr. Herman Williams was living a charmed life. He was a young orthopedic surgeon with a beautiful wife and had just been accepted to one of the best practices in the country.

“I was literally on the verge of achieving all my dreams,” said Dr. Williams.

During a pick-up basketball game between rival surgeons, Dr. Williams started feeling dizzy and decided to take himself out of the game.

“I was just fortunate my wife was the scorekeeper. And she noticed that I had slumped over and had started foaming at the mouth, and I just died,” Dr. Williams explained.

No pulse – his friends performed CPR until the fire department arrived with a defibrillator. The electric jolt brought him back to life.

He made a full recovery. Although his condition made him change his career path to medical consulting.

Fast forward 25 years: Dr. Williams was at the airport in Nashville and it happens again.

“I see a gentleman sitting, I say ‘Hi, how are you? He says Hi, How are you?’ The last thing I remember is him saying ‘Are you alright?’ I start to fall, a woman catches me and eases me to the ground. And he immediately starts performing CPR,” Dr. Williams remembered.

Bill Mixon is his name. He was recovering from his own heart attack. The woman who caught Dr. Williams is Terrie Layne.

Two strangers who became two heroes.

“Once you make that decision, you are all in. It’s you and the outcome, regardless of the outcome, it’s courageous and heroic to make that decision. It really is hero work,” said Dr. Williams.

Dr. Williams wrote a book about it called Clear. In it, he describes how these terrifying events gave him a purpose: to live a life of compassion and kindness, to try to connect with everyone he encounters. Because in the end, Dr. Williams says we all need each other, we just don’t know when.

The American Heart Association will tell you CPR, if administered immediately can double or triple a person’s chance for survival.


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Source: https://fox17.com/news/ferrier-files/ferrier-files-green-hills-man-dies-twice-lives-to-tell-his-story