The Laurel Police Department received an Automated External Defibrillator (AED) for police cruisers on Wednesday. The donation was made possible by the Fraternal Order of Police as part of a grant from the Firehouse Subs Public Safety Foundation.
Defibrillators are devices that measure heart rhythm and can send a shock to the heart in order to treat sudden cardiac arrest. Defibrillators are becoming more and more important with police officers often first to the scene, especially in rural areas.
Sergeant Michael Reaves with the Laurel Police Department said when it comes to emergencies like a heart attack, every second counts.
“Obviously we respond to a lot of calls and a lot of times we arrive minutes before the ambulance,” Reaves said. “If someone is in cardiac arrest, this is a valuable tool to resuscitate those individuals and hopefully save a life.”
In 2005, the Firehouse Subs founders established the Firehouse Subs Public Safety Foundation with the mission of providing funding, life-saving equipment and educational opportunities to first-responders and public safety organizations. Through the non-profit 501(c)(3), Firehouse Subs Public Safety Foundation has given more than $24 million to hometown heroes in 46 states, Puerto Rico and Canada.
FOP Nation President Chuck Canterbury said that the $250,000 grant would help get 263 AEDs into the hands of police across the country. The FOP distributed the AEDs to state lodges that works closely with law enforcement to identify areas with the biggest need for these life saving devices.