Franklin County AL invests in LifeVac rescue devices

FRANKLIN CO., Ala. (WAFF) – The Franklin County Emergency Management Agency received a grant to help purchase LifeVac Choking Rescue Devices.

Nearly 1,000 Americans die from choking every year, according to the National Institute. This is why officials in Franklin County are upgrading their fleet with new devices to make sure they can respond to every type of emergency call.

144 devices were purchased and will allow several groups, like schools and fire departments to receive them.

Franklin County EMA Director Mary Glass says the device is incredibly simple to use. She says all first responders should have them and so should parents. Glass made the decision to purchase them for the whole county after buying one herself. But getting the device all comes down to making sure emergency crews have the right tools for every job.

“I was afraid that we would run up on somebody. And you don’t have the strength to do the Heimlich maneuver on an adult. I mean it takes a lot of strength to do that. And with this, it looks simple and I’m hoping it is if we ever have to use it,” said Glass.

Glass said they recently responded to a call a that a two-year-old could be choking but it sparked an idea with her to get them for the entire county.

“So we’ve given them out to all the fire departments, the rescue squads, the ambulance services,” Glass explained. “Then we went further. We went into the community centers. We went into the schools.”

Now the entire county will be covered when it comes to choking.