Irvine Police Patrol Units to be Equipped with AEDs
Beginning the week of August 5, Irvine’s marked patrol fleet will be equipped with 49 automated external defibrillator (AED) devices. Sudden cardiac arrest (SCA) is the disruption of the heart’s function, causing a lack of blood flow to vital organs. According to the American Red Cross, SCA is one of the leading causes of unexpected death and affects more than 350,000 people in the United States annually.
Police officers, who are already in the field, are often the first to arrive to a cardiac event. Time is of the essence in these emergencies as the survival rate can drop by 7 to10 percent for every minute that passes. The Irvine Police Department recognizes this opportunity for officers to intervene with initial assessment and lifesaving actions while advanced medical treatment is on the way. Irvine officers train regularly in CPR and First Aid and have recently added training in the use of AEDs.
“Our commitment to responding to medical emergencies is evident by the number of police officers who are recognized each year for their lifesaving actions,” said City Manager Sean Joyce.
The AEDs purchased provide audio and visual prompts, guiding officers through an assessment process including and advisement when a shock is needed. The devices are completely compatible to equipment utilized by the Orange County Fire Authority, making the transition between emergency responders seamless. Each $1,600 device is equipped with adult and pediatric electrodes. The purchase, totaling approximately $84,000, was funded by the Supplemental Law Enforcement Services Funds (SLESF).