News & Media

Cool demeanour saves a life

  • Wodonga West Fire Brigade's Lieutenant Matt Dobson and Captain Ross Coyle - photo courtesy of the Border Mail

By: CFA News

Category: Health & Safety, People

  10.29 AM 28 July, 2016

Location: District 24 News

Views: 22400

A Wodonga West member has performed lifesaving CPR on a member of the public at Wodonga plaza last weekend, earning accolades from paramedics and onlookers.

Ross Coyle, Captain of Wodonga West FIre Brigade, was visiting the plaza last Sunday 24 July when a man in his late 60s collapsed inside a shop.

First to respond and assist, Ross immediately recognised that the man had gone into cardiac arrest and started CPR while an ambulance was called.

Despite the CPR initially working to good effect, the patient receded back into cardiac arrest – but Ross did not ‘miss a beat’, continuing life saving measures until paramedics arrived.

Dean Stuart, an ex-paramedic who also assisted, and later wrote in to CFA’s District 24 office specifically to commend and recognise Ross on his handling of the situation.

“Ross continued to work the airway effectively until we were relieved by paramedics,” he said.

“My wife, an Emergency Nurse, noted afterwards the calm outward demeanour and effectiveness of Ross’s technique while performing his actions. Definitely an asset to your command.”

Jim, a member of Ambulance Victoria, was also compelled to follow up the incident with a letter to CFA.

His letter confirmed that the patient had been able to be successfully resuscitated via defibrillation when ambulance crews arrived.

And on the way to hospital the man recovered sufficiently to be talking with paramedics in the ambulance.  

“Because of Ross’s actions this man will walk out of hospital,” he said.

Operations Manager Paul King described Ross as a strong leader who was able to show leadership in a situation where many others would have felt confused and unsure of how to act.

“In this case Ross has stepped up, and he has saved a man’s life,” Paul said.

“There were various people who helped and assisted but Ross was the first there and who led the response until ambulance arrived.

“All of those people who were there, including the man’s wife have contacted me or CFA to praise and recognize Ross’s actions – including his actual technical ability in performing the CPR, which was spot on.

“Most of all they wanted to highlight his cool demeanour and his courage.”

In a Facebook post, Ross Coyle highlighted that medical assistance is provided 'every other day' by firefighters through the Emergency Medical Response program.

He commented:

"But if there was a message from this story, it should be that everyone should learn CPR. You never know when you will need the skill, and who you may have to use it on."

"I am delighted and proud the gentleman will fine. I was also delighted another couple of guys with great CPR skill stepped in and helped equally. We didn't save him. CPR did."



Last Updated: 02 August 2016