Potentially life-saving equipment is to be installed on coaches across NSW TrainLink routes as part of a Transport for NSW (TfNSW) trial to ensure safer journeys on long trips in remote areas.
Welcoming the trial, Minister for Regional Transport and Roads, Jenny Aitchison said it would see Automated External Defibrillators (AEDs) installed across all TrainLink timetabled coaches servicing routes of more than four hours.
“Defibrillators save lives. It’s as simple as that,” Ms Aitchison said.
“These coaches provide a great connection for our regional communities but some travel long distances through remote parts of the State, which can make it difficult to access medical assistance quickly.”
Chief Executive of NSW TrainLink Peter Allaway said placing defibrillators on coaches grew from an idea initiated internally by passionate staff.
“This trial specifically targets longer routes where there may be mobile black spots or emergency response times might take longer,” Mr Allaway said.
“This will benefit coach customers, drivers, and rural and remote communities as a whole, providing even safer public transport.”
Deputy Commissioner (Clinical Systems) of St John Ambulance Australia NSW, Elliot Williams said only a small percentage of people survived an out-of-hospital cardiac arrest without CPR or a defibrillator being administered.
“Each year 30,000 people in Australia experience a sudden cardiac arrest. Currently only one in 10 survive,” Mr Williams said.
“In a cardiac arrest, seconds count. When administered quickly, early CPR and using a defibrillator can increase a person’s chances of survival by up to 70 per cent.”