Bellevue is the fifth largest city in Washington and one of its fastest growing, with a fire department that has grown to meet the expanding needs of our community. We respond to approximately 20,000 incidents each year, 75% of them medical in nature.
The department maintains one of the highest cardiac arrest survival rates in world. One of a select few firefighting agencies with a Class 2 rating from the Washington State Survey and Rating Bureau, Bellevue Fire ranks in the top 1% of the 46,699 departments in the U.S., and is one of the top three in the state.
PulsePoint Life Saving App
You know CPR. You've been trained how to use an AED. But will you ever be in a position to save a life? We'd say the chances have recently increased. On June 1, 2022, the King County Fire Chiefs Association, in coordination with the Medic One Foundation launched PulsePoint, a life saving mobile app that notifies users when someone nearby is in cardiac arrest and needs immediate help. Similar to emergency alerts that are pushed out to cell-phones, registered PulsePoint users will be alerted anytime there is a cardiac arrest emergency in their immediate vicinity, allowing hands-only CPR to be started minutes earlier.
More information about Pulse Point and PulsePoint AED can be found at the Medic One Foundation.
It may not feel like it yet, but summer is just around the corner. As we are surrounded by natural waters (we are so lucky), National Water Safety Awareness Month is as good a time as any to review some basic water safety tips.
One of the first things to remember is that, while the waters are not mirages, their temperatures can be. Not only are our lakes deep, but they also spend nine solid months hovering around 40 degrees. That’s cold. Cold enough to induce hypothermia after a mere 30 minutes. If you’re recreating on or around cold water, wear a properly fitted lift jacket, even if you’re a strong swimmer. It significantly increases chance of survival should you be submerged.
Additional, and equally important, water safety tips include:
- Consider enrolling in formal swimming lessons. While not a replacement for other safety measures, the basic water skills taught can provide lifesaving minutes.
- Learn to recognize the signs of drowning. They are not, as often depicted in movies, as obvious as you may think. Drowning is often quick and silent. A person in danger of drowning may have their head tilted back, their mouth at water level, and appear to be bobbing up and down.
- Always, always assign someone outside of the water to be the water watcher. This person needs to be committed to the task. Assign this role in short stints to various people so that the temptation to look away – at a phone, a friend, a distraction – is removed.
- Take a CPR class. Cardiac arrest survival rates are world-renowned in King County. A large part of that success is the willingness of bystanders to perform CPR. More information on CPR classes can be found at the Medic One Foundation.