Local police department receives grant, purchases seven new AEDs for officers - East Idaho News

Local police department receives grant, purchases seven new AEDs for officers

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ST. ANTHONY — A local police department received lifesaving equipment after a foundation awarded them a grant that will help officers on everyday calls.

The St. Anthony Police Department received an $11,200 grant from Firehouse Subs Public Safety Foundation and purchased seven automated external defibrillators (AEDs). The foundation is a nonprofit and provides lifesaving equipment and needed resources to first responders and public safety organizations. Click here to read more about the nonprofit.

Sgt. Hunter Gregory with the St. Anthony Police Department told EastIdahoNews.com they applied for the grant in January and just received the AEDs.

“It’s a pretty competitive process. We were happy to be able to be considered for it. It’s not something that would have been able to fit in our yearly budget,” Gregory said.

He said the AEDs would be used by the officers when responding to and assisting people suffering medical emergencies. He explained it’s the first time the department has had AEDs.

“There have been instances in the past where this equipment could have been used but wasn’t able to be. We’ve had several individuals that have been in crisis with heart attacks,” Gregory said. “We’ve responded and we’ve just been able to do CPR, and depending on where we are at, anywhere from three to 10 minutes later, the ambulance will arrive.”

He explained that the ambulance service is different in the area compared to other counties. Typically, officers respond first to medical calls.

“We will usually beat the ambulance there at least by two minutes, even during the day when they are on shift. We don’t have people just on staff at the ambulance shed all the time, especially at night. Their response time is a little bit longer than it would be normally during the day when there’s people on,” Gregory said. “So we are responsible to respond to medical calls as well as regular police calls in the city.”

There are six officers in the department. Each one will have an AED in their patrol vehicle, and one will be put at the senior center in the city.

Gregory said the officers would be trained on the new AEDs in the upcoming week. He’s grateful for the grant, especially when minutes count in emergency situations.

“On behalf of the St. Anthony Police Department and its members, I want to thank the Firehouse Subs Public Safety Foundation and our local Firehouse Subs in Ammon,” said Gregory in a news release. “We are incredibly humbled to receive this vital equipment to continue to keep St. Anthony safe.”