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Wednesday 18 September 2019

Quick-thinking security man hailed a 'hero' after saving woman's life in shopping centre

"She had begun to turn blue"

Mercury Security’s Paul Telfer is congratulated by Store Manager , Saoirse O'Shea
Mercury Security’s Paul Telfer is congratulated by Store Manager , Saoirse O'Shea
Amy Molloy

Amy Molloy

A security officer has been praised for his quick-thinking after he came to the aid of a woman who collapsed in a busy shopping centre.

Mercury Security Management’s Paul Telfer, who works at Life Style Sports in Cork’s The Capitol shopping centre, spotted a woman collapsing from an apparent seizure.

He immediately ran to the woman and placed her into the recovery position.

The woman appeared to be turning blue and the security man acted quickly to ensure her airway was clear.

Paul remained with the woman until medical assistance arrived and she was taken from the premises in a stable condition by ambulance.

Life Style Sports manager, Saoirse O'Shea, strongly believes that Paul’s quick-thinking prevented a much more serious incident occurring.

“Paul’s reaction to this event was as quick as any first responder I have ever seen,” she said.

“We couldn’t thank Paul enough for what he did that day, he was nothing short of a hero. Only for Paul’s quick reactions this would have been a much more serious incident,” added Saoirse.

Epilepsy Ireland has issued guidelines for what to do if you find yourself near someone who is having what is termed a "tonic-clonic" seizure.

These are convulsive seizures involving loss of consciousness, muscle stiffening, the person falling to the ground followed by jerking movements. This seizure is potentially life threatening if the person continues in the seizure state too long.

The guidelines are as follows:

What you should do:

Note the time the seizure started. If the seizure continues for longer than five minutes, call an ambulance

Protect the person from injury and remove any harmful objects that may be nearby

Cushion the person's head

Check for epilepsy ID (bracelet/ necklace)

Gently place the person in the recovery position when the seizure has finished. There is a small risk of post-seizure vomiting so the person's head should be turned to ensure that any vomit will drain out of the mouth without being inhaled

Stay with them until recovery is complete (5-20 minutes)

Calmly reassure the person

If the person should suffer any injury as a result of the seizure, normal first aid measures should be implemented.

What you should NOT do:

Do not panic or walk away

Do not hold down or restrain the person's movements

Do not put anything in the person's mouth - it is a myth that they can swallow their tongue

Do not try to move the person unless they are in danger

Do not give the person anything to eat or drink until they are fully recovered.

The charity has also released a video to raise awareness about the correction action to take:

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