The Danville Life Saving Crew participated in the American Heart Association's HeartChase at Ballou Park on Friday, June 9, 2017. Participants competed in different checkpoint challenges that revolved around heart health.
At DLSC's checkpoint, participants were able to use mannequins to stimulate life saving CPR techniques. Instructors gave a quick lesson on CPR, but encouraged everyone to take a CPR class and become licensed.
Even those who are not in a healthcare related field should learn CPR. Knowing this lifesaving method could save a family member, friend or strangers' life.
"Statistically, it is more likely that you will have to perform CPR on a relative." Gary Ryan, paramedic and CPR instructor, said.
DLSC instructors taught HeartChase contestants how to react if they find someone who is not breathing. Before beginning CPR, contestants were told to call 9-1-1 to send emergency help. Then, they would check the person's chest area for bleeding. If no bleeding has occurred, participants were instructed to put one hand over the other and begin pressing hard and fast on the middle of the chest.
Participants practiced compressions for two minutes straight, pressing down at least two inches deep each time. To stay on beat, they listened to the Bee Gees' hit song "Stayin' Alive."
It is important to continue chest compressions until an EMT arrives. By continuing the compressions, blood is able to circulate and increases the chance of survival.
After practicing CPR, participants then ran to the next checkpoint and were able to track their
progress in the HeartChase Mobile Game App. The team with the most points were deemed winners of the event.
Through fundraising efforts, the American Heart Association will receive $47,637.85 to help "chase" away heart disease. Much of the money earned will stay local.
Citizens can stay up-to-date on heart health by taking classes at the Danville Area Training Center. Initial and renewal classes are offered in First Aid CPR, Basic Life Support and Advanced Life Support. For more information, visit Danville Life Saving Crew's training page.