The Rifle Fire Protection District, in partnership with the Lions Club of Rifle, has purchased six automated external defibrillators to be strategically placed in our community.
The intent is to have a device available to the lay public, so they can act quickly in the event of sudden cardiac arrest. Having the public educated on the use of these devices, coupled with having them readily available and accessible in strategically located places within the community, is a key element to a cardiac arrest victim's ultimate outcome.
Placement of these devices will likely include Wamsley, Highland and Graham Mesa elementary schools, Rifle Public Library, Rifle City Hall and the Garfield County fairgrounds. Locations will be recommended by the fire district and Lions Club administrators. They will be stored within a secure and highly visible and accessible location, with the appropriate accessories to service both adult and young child and toddler victims. The devices will also be placed for the most efficient response time. Placement will also focus on public access points for early defibrillation efforts and/or intervention, based on the incidence of cardiac arrest.
Sudden cardiac arrest is a health crisis that affects 295,000 U.S. citizens of all ages every year. To put it into perspective, 2,640 people died in house fires in 2010. Approximately the same amount of people died from sudden cardiac arrest over the course of three days. Most victims need to be defibrillated within three to five minutes due to the deadly (shockable) rhythm of their heart. Rapid treatment of ventricular fibrillation with the application of a controlled electrical shock is essential to the victim's survival. Most fire and emergency medical services systems cannot reach these cardiac victims as quickly as bystanders at the scene.
The Lions Club and Rifle Fire Protection District are very pleased to provide the Rifle community with this life saving equipment.