A local hero's actions have called attention to the need for Automatic External Defibrillators and CPR training.
Off-duty Birmingham Firefighter, Rob Trautwein, helped save a Trussville man's life in January, after he slammed into Trautwein's car.
Trautwein was honored for his actions Tuesday at the Birmingham City Council meeting.
Jack Martin became unconscious after suffering a form of cardiac arrest, known as ventricular tachycardia/fibrillation.
Trautwein was able to save Martin's life by using a nearby AED, and performing CPR.
Kathy Scruggs, with the American Red Cross says the incident calls attention to the need for training.
The Red Cross reports survival rates cline from 5 -70 percent "when an organization has a trained response team and an AED is available within the first 4 minutes after a cardiac arrest."
Each year, as many as 350,000 people experience a sudden cardiac arrest. 7,000 of those patients are children, according to the Red Cross.
Scruggs reports CPR alone is often insufficient to save someone's life. "One thing that a lot of people don't understand is that when someone's heart stops, it's an electrical problem," Scruggs says. "People think it's a heart attack... that's only about half the time."
While AED's are "automated," which means they give verbal instructions, training can make a big difference in effective use. "It gives you the confidence to respond and say, hey, I could help this person," Scruggs explained.
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