Life-saving equipment installed at popular Park City locations | ParkRecord.com

Life-saving equipment installed at popular Park City locations

Jay Hamburger THE PARK RECORD

An important piece of emergency medical equipment is now kept within reach at four popular locations in Park City.

City Hall and the Park City Fire District in recent weeks teamed to install automated external defibrillators, sometimes referred to as AEDs, in locations that attract crowds at various times of the year. Defibrillators are used when someone suffers cardiac arrest.

The defibrillators were installed starting in early August. They are located at Miners Park on Main Street, along the Poison Creek trail close to the basketball court at City Park, on the restroom building at the Quinn’s Junction recreation complex and on the west side of the shed at the McPolin Farm.

Hugh Daniels, the emergency program manager at City Hall, said the locations were selected since they are easily accessible and they are oftentimes used for recreation purposes.

"They’re life-saving apparatus," Daniels said.

The defibrillators are designed to be used by someone without training. Daniels said there are pictograms and the defibrillators have a preprogrammed voice command that instructs someone how to properly use the equipment.

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Daniels said the installations are part of a pilot program that could be expanded. He said defibrillators were previously installed in 15 municipal buildings with plans to put them in a few additional city facilities. Ten Park City Police Department vehicles carry defibrillators as well, he said. A City Hall newsletter indicates defibrillators could be put at trailheads later.

"Having an AED closeby can make the difference between life and death. When used on someone who is unresponsive and not breathing an AED is extremely safe," Tate Shaw, the assistant recreation manager for City Hall, said in the municipal newsletter.

Officials point to a 2014 emergency as they discuss the importance of defibrillators. A 24-year-old man collapsed at the Park City Municipal Athletic & Recreation Center in March of that year. Staffers checked for vital signs, called for assistance and gathered a defibrillator, officials said at the time. The man survived.

A City Hall statement after the incident noted what were at the time recent policies regarding defibrillators.

The municipal government funded the purchase of three of the defibrillators while the Fire District paid for one of them.

Paul Hewitt, the Park City fire chief, described the ease of using the defibrillators. He said the voice command provides detailed instructions and added the defibrillators also have written instructions. Someone applies two sticky patches to a victim’s chest. Wires attached to the patches are connected to the defibrillator unit.

"They’re very easy to use. They’re not like the paramedic life packs," Hewitt said, comparing the defibrillators to the equipment professional emergency responders carry.