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Published: October 20, 2009

Pilgrims guards have demonstrated their ability to stay calm under pressure by saving the life of a contractor who had suffered a heart attack during the course of their shift.

The guards, based at the Dagenham site of pharmaceuticals company Sanofi-Aventis, reacted with virtually perfect textbook skills and drills when discovering that a contractor working on site had collapsed and stopped breathing.

Pilgrims’ guards on duty responded without hesitation and upon arrival at the scene quickly determined that the victim had suffered a heart attack.

Part of the Pilgrims training programme includes medical and incident response training, which the guards had completed as part of their SOPs (Standard Operating Procedure). This training was put to good use in responding to this incident quickly and effectively. Two of the guards administered CPR whilst their supervisor controlled the scene. The remainder of the staff continued to ensure that site security was not compromised whilst the incident occurred.

The critical condition of the gentleman at the time later became more poignant as it emerged that his heart stopped seven times on the way to hospital. Whilst the guards had only cared for the victim for a matter of minutes, they gave the paramedics the vital time needed to keep him alive long enough for them to stabilise him and deliver him to intensive care.

“This case shows that enlisting and training guards effectively with a range of skills is imperative,” said David Freear, Director of Operations for Pilgrims. “Security guards are there to protect and incidents such as this show that investing in your staff means they are far more likely to give a first class response. Just one incident shows clients the tremendous benefits of investment in a good quality guarding company with thorough training procedures.”

Thanks to the guards’ quick thinking and actions the man has now made a full recovery. Pilgrims has awarded the guards with certificates of special commendation.