Two members of staff from Frossard House who performed CPR (cardiopulmonary resuscitation) on a collapsed colleague have been recognised for their actions by the Chief Officer of the St John Emergency Ambulance Service.

Colin Vaudin and Chris Welsby gave life-saving first aid to Jon Williams after he suffered a cardiac arrest at work on the fifth floor of the States of Guernsey offices in October last year.

Colin Vaudin, a retired army officer with first aid training, was sitting a few meters away from Mr Williams when he collapsed at his desk, while Chris Welsby, a trained first aider who previously served with the Royal Navy was in the office next door.

Mr Welsby said “Someone came into the office saying they needed a first aider and for a split second I looked around then I thought – that’s me. As I approached Jon he was on the floor and having difficulty breathing, I placed him in the recovery position and monitored him, within less than a minute he had slowly stopped breathing and became unresponsive, that’s when Colin and I started CPR.  I’ve dealt with various first aid requirements in the past but I’ve never experienced a cardiac arrest before, thankfully the training just kicked in.”

Mr Vaudin said “I put Jon on the floor and quickly assessed his breathing and circulation, as soon I released he wasn’t breathing Chris and I started chest compressions.  Fortunately we had two people there able to start CPR within seconds. It shows why it is so important that people learn CPR and other first aid skills and have the confidence to use them.”

The pair received the Chief Officer’s Recognition of Performance Award for their prompt and efficient actions. The certificates were presented by SJEAS Chief Officer Ali Marquis and chairman on the SJEAS board Steve Le Page.

Mrs Marquis said “Colin and Chris acted quickly and efficiently to recognise the seriousness of the situation and start CPR before the ambulance crew arrived. They both had the confidence to use their first aid knowledge in what were difficult and distressing circumstances. Their actions on that day are commendable and it is important to recognise their efforts.”

Two emergency ambulance clinicians who treated Mr Williams, paramedic Dom Fletcher and EMT Nick Peters, also receive the Recognition of Performance Award. As the senior clinician Dom Fletcher took charge of the resuscitation and administered Advanced Life Support before Mr Williams was transferred to the Emergency Department.

Firefighters from Green Watch of the Guernsey Fire & Rescue Service who also attended the incident were also thanked for the role they played as co-responders.

Mr Williams said “I am indebted to Colin and Chris for their prompt action and to everyone else involved. If it wasn’t for their combined efforts I would not be here today and I have so much to thank them for”.

Ali Marquis added “The positive outcome was achieved through a combination of the quick action taken by two of Jon’s colleagues and the excellent care he received from the ambulance clinicians supported by colleagues from the Fire & Rescue Service”

Anyone wishing to learn or refresh their first aid and CPR skills or learn how to use an AED can contact St John Training by email or by phone on 247979. Automated External Defibrillators are also available at the St John HealthCare shop at the Rohais.


Posted: April 1, 2019