The crews of Shetland’s whitefish boats will be safer at sea following the donation of new defibrillators for 12 local vessels.

The new devices, designed to give controlled electrical shocks to the heart of someone in cardiac arrest, have been secured for the local fleet through grants from the Scottish government’s Marine Fund Scotland.

It’s part of a wider £80,000 government investment under which a total of 100 new defibrillators have been gifted to fishing vessels throughout Scotland.

Sheila Keith, executive officer of the Shetland Fishermen’s Association (SFA), said: “In the case of sudden cardiac arrest, we know that the sooner a defibrillator can be deployed, the better the chances of survival – even more so for fishermen working at sea, where professional medical help is less immediately accessible.”

The 12 Shetland fishing crews set to take defibrillators to sea have also had instruction in how to use and maintain the devices, as well as basic CPR refresher training.

Shetland Fishermen office manager Una Simpson has been delivering the defibrillators and training onboard.

She said: “These units are easy to use and service, and are designed to speak you through the process of CPR and offer reassurance.

“We sincerely hope that they never have to be used, but it’s about having the confidence to open them up if needed – and knowing that the defibrillator will automatically give you simple and clear instructions to follow.”

The SFA expressed its thanks to its colleagues at the Scottish White Fish Producers’ Association and the lifesaving charity Lucky2Bhere for assistance in securing the defibrillator devices and the necessary training.

This story was taken from the latest issue of Fishing News. For more up-to-date and in-depth reports on the UK and Irish commercial fishing sector, subscribe to Fishing News here or buy the latest single issue for just £3.30 here


Subscribe to Fishing News magazine today; never miss an issue and save 55%!