Life-saving defib for North Lanarkshire village

Publication date 20 February 2019

A life-saving emergency defibrillator has been installed at the Community Centre in the village of Plains, near Airdrie in North Lanarkshire.

A group of men pose with a defibrillator

Every week, around 70 people in Scotland have a cardiac arrest. For every minute that someone goes without treatment, their chances of survival reduce by 10%, so performing CPR and using a defibrillator within the first few minutes of collapse can make the difference between life and death.

The defibrillator been installed on the outside wall of the community centre on the village's Main Street, and is available to be used 24/7. As well as being a resource for the residents and businesses of the village itself, Main Street is also on the route of the National Cycle Network, and sees hundreds of cyclists pass through regularly.

The device was funded by donations from locals, after the Plains Community Futures group set up a crowdfunding page. St John Scotland helped by topping up the funds as part of our drive to increase access to defibrillators in local communities across the country.

George McCutcheon, Chair of Plains Community Futures, said: “It's critical that we ensure we can do everything we can to help not only the emergency services but our own families. If someone has a cardiac arrest, we all know we should dial 999 and ask for an ambulance, and some us know how to do CPR. However we can do more. It's vital that someone who is in critical need gets this treatment as soon as possible.

"This defibrillator is available to anyone requiring it, and will shock the heart into starting again after it's stopped. When you call 999 and ask for an ambulance, they will give you the code to open the box and retrieve the defib. Even if it's only used once, it could save a life.”

Volunteers from St John Scotland's Glasgow area were on hand to unveil the defibrillator, and will be providing free training at the Community Centre to help locals learn simple bystander CPR, and help familiarise themselves with the defibrillator.