Hero students rescue bleeding man after fall at busy St Albans junction
PUBLISHED: 10:04 11 September 2014 | UPDATED: 10:10 11 September 2014
Three quick-witted students have been hailed as life-savers for helping a man who was knocked unconscious and bleeding profusely after falling in the middle of one of St Albans’ busiest intersections.
St Columba’s College pupils Alex Gillingham, 17, Rohan Mapara and James Charteris, both 16, put their first aid skills into practice when the man fell and hit his head while suffering an epileptic fit in the middle of the Holywell Hill crossroads.
A school representative said it was “an unusual start to their first day in sixth form”.
Last Wednesday, the trio were walking up Holywell Hill on their lunch break when they noticed a middle-aged man sprawled across the centre of the road.
Rohan explained: “He was bleeding profusely from his head. Our first aid training that we learned at school through Combined Cadet Force (CCF), and as lifeguards, took over.
“We asked someone to call an ambulance. A lady from Cote Brasserie came out with clean napkins and I tried to stem the bleeding.
“The man was drifting in and out of consciousness and we were worried that he would have another fit.”
When a builder’s lorry pulled over nearby, Alex asked the driver if barriers and bollards being carried by the vehicle could be used to effectively barricade the road and protect the injured man.
James said: “I tried to direct traffic to ensure that no one else got injured – it was quite frightening.”
Luckily, a nurse driving past saw the teenagers helping the man and stopped to assist.
After the pupils noticed that the injured man was wearing a Wilkinson badge, the St Albans branch was alerted and the store manager arrived at the scene soon afterwards.
When an ambulance arrived 20 minutes after being phoned, the boys then helped the paramedics lift the man onto a stretcher.
He was treated at Watford Hospital.
The builders retrieved their barriers and Alex, James and Rohan returned to school.
Alex said: “Some first days are daunting, but this one was terrifying!”
The boys were particularly pleased upon learning the following day that a member of the public had phoned the school to praise their calmness despite the distressing situation, and to say she believed their efforts had helped save the man’s life.
Paul Millward, store manager of Wilkinson in the Maltings, said the staff member had fully recovered from his ordeal.
Praising the boys for their efforts, Paul said: “They are a credit to their parents. It’s great that there are teenagers prepared to help out like that.”
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