New defibrillator machines have been installed at Derry City Council’s sports facilities.
The move has been welcomed by Sinn Féin councillor Colly Kelly who tabled a motion to Derry City Council in November calling for the machines to be introduced and for staff to be trained in their use.
The cityside councillor made the call for the life-saving machines to be introduced following a number of sudden deaths during sporting events.
“There had been a lot of concern expressed locally about the lack of life saving defibrillators in Council buildings and sporting facilities in the Derry area.
“I am a keen sports fan and the sudden death of Tyrone footballer Cormac McAnallen in 2004 brought home to everyone the need to be prepared in the event of an emergency. And more recently we had the collapse of Bolton midfielder Fabrice Muambaand during a football match.” Colr. Kelly said.
Colr. Kelly said the introduction of the machines is the outworking of his motion to Council.
“There are many sporting organisations such as the GAA who have taken the lead on this issue and are proactively fundraising to provide this vital piece of emergency equipment at their sports grounds.
“I felt this was an issue that the council needed to move on as a matter of urgency. My Motion before the Council in November called for defibrillators be installed at all Derry City Council buildings, and sporting facilities and that staff will be trained to use a defibrillators.
“I was very pleased that it got unanimous backing. And the outworkings of that now sees these lifesaving machines installed and staff trained in their use. If this saves one life it will have been worth it,” he said.
Councillor Kelly visited Lisnagelvin Leisure Centre last week to see how at first hand how the defibrillator machines are used.
It is planned that staff at all Derry City Council owned facilities will be trained in the use of the debrillator machines in the event of an emergency.
More than 40 members of staff have been trained to date and training is ongoing to train more staff in their use.