AN ambulance volunteer, who saved the life of his seven-month-old daughter, has urged parents to learn basic first aid emergency skills as part of a new campaign.
Thomas McPherson, 36, of Flax Croft, Hatton, faced every parent’s worst nightmare when his daughter Catherine started having convulsions and stopped breathing.
But because he is a volunteer with the St John Ambulance knew how to perform CPR while his partner rang for an ambulance.
Now, Mr McPherson has called on all parents to learn first aid skills after the St John Ambulance revealed 55 per cent would not know how to save their child’s life after a serious accident.
He said: “Because I had learned the basics of first aid as a volunteer with St John Ambulance, I was confident in using those skills when I really needed them.
“I think my training helped me to remain calm, when many parents would not have been able to think so clearly in such a serious and emotive situation.
“For me those skills were obviously very important because it was a case of saving my daughter’s life.
“Everyone should have basic first aid skills. It’s little things like putting people into the recovery position and opening their airways which can make the difference.”
To encourage more people to learn basic first aid skills, the St John Ambulance has launched an emotive TV advert which will air on Monday night during ITV’s Doc Martin show.
The advert will show a boy falling from a tree in an empty park as his clueless father screams for help.
The charity’s research said that the majority of parents who were faced with the same situation would not know the correct way to help the boy.
Despite 65 per cent of parents claiming to know basic first aid, 57 per cent said they would leave the boy until an ambulance arrived, which would not be correct, the charity said.
To find out more visit www.SJA.org.uk/savetheboy