Following the success of recognising “Everyday Lifesavers” at the Drowning Report/Water Safety Week launch in 2013, the Play it Safe by the Water committee created an ongoing program to recognise aquatic “Everyday Lifesavers”.
The “Everyday Lifesaver” award recognises people from aquatic industries and from the community, who have used their lifesaving and water safety skills to perform a significant rescue and/or save somebody’s life.
Everyday Lifesaver awards were yesterday recognised at the Water Safety Week 2017 launch event, presented to the following people:
Addison Hunnisett: Eight-year-old Addison Hunnisett became an Everyday Lifesaver hero after she saved her father Ashley from drowning at Greensborough’s WaterMarc when he drifted into the deep end and sank to the bottom of the pool. He had started swimming lessons a month before. Addison swam 10 metres to her father and helped him to the edge of the pool.
Paul Larcher: Proving you’re never off-duty when you’re a lifesaver, current Treasurer, patrolling lifesaver and Age Manager at Port Melbourne LSC pulled a man out of the surf in Leuwin National Park in Western Australia and carried out CPR with two others for 15 minutes, getting him breathing again before a rescue helicopter arrived.
Mila Guerrero: 12-year-old surf life saving nipper participant Mila Guerrero put her training into action to save the lives of two tourists caught in a rip in water off Lorne beach. She instructed the pair to hold onto her surfboard and pulled them out of the water one by one.
Brad Norton: At a function held at the Fawkner Leisure Centre, Brad came to the rescue of a 78-year-old man who had a significant heart attack and fell unconscious with no breathing or pulse. He reacted fast and immediately started CPR, directing someone to assist, ensuring an ambulance had been called and asking for the centre’s defib machine. He delivered two defib shocks to the man and continued CPR until paramedics arrived. The patient was able to walk back into the centre a few weeks later to thank Brad, now his hero, for his actions.
Isaiah Wittingslow, Grace Lacy and Chris Douglas: In the pool hall at the Kew Recreation Centre a man was noticed by Isaiah Wittingslow, the lifeguard on duty, to be looking unwell. As he approached the patron, the man collapsed, so Isaiah contacted his duty manager, Grace Lacy, and signalled the emergency. He assessed the patron before commencing CPR after the patron became unresponsive and stopped breathing. Chris Douglas and Grace responded to the incident, bringing oxygen and the defib machine to assist. Paramedics were called and were glowing in their praise of the staff, saying the man would likely have died without their quick reactions. The patron has now made a full recovery.
Sam McWilliam and Evan Barry: Wodonga Sports & Leisure Centre had a critical incident where an unresponsive male patron was pulled from the pool. Sam McWilliam administered CPR as the lifeguard, assisted by a trained patron. Duty manager Evan Barry controlled the scene and ensured the defibrillator and oxygen were collected immediately and put to use. The result of their quick actions ensured the patron made a full recovery.
Bernadette Pulis: Bonbeach LSC member Bernadette Pulis was at a contestant audition for the “Millionaire Hot Seat” television show when a woman in her twenties suddenly slumped in her chair and was making jerking movements, before starting to turn blue. Bernadette ran to the stage and took charge of the situation, instructing another member of the audience to commence CPR while an ambulance was called. She managed the CPR, advising to make it quicker. When she noticed the patient starting the last breaths noticeable before dying, as well as frothing at the mouth, she cleared her airways and got another audience member to take over the CPR at the correct rate. The woman was put into an induced coma and transported to hospital. She is now out of the induced coma and appears to be able to make a full recovery.
More photos from the Everyday Lifesaver event available here.
To set up media interviews with any of the Everyday Lifesavers mentioned above, please call the LSV media team on 0411 193 962 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.