Save a life by being the first to respond

It's a relaxing Sunday afternoon at the park.

The weather is great. Kids are playing and people are relaxing but suddenly a large bang and the shattering of glass breaks through the otherwise peaceful day.

Two cars have collided right next to the park.

Instinctively people rush to help. Someone calls 000 while others go to the cars but what now?

This is where first aid training kicks in.

On average it takes around 10 minutes for an ambulance to arrive to the scene of an accident.

For any major injury or illness it's those first few minutes after the accident which are most crucial to survival. There were 1,137 lives lost across Australia in road accidents in 2018 with an estimated 57 per cent of deaths occurring in the first five to seven minutes.

Having basic first aid training can help save a life following a car accident (or any accident).

"Research has shown that if the person first on the scene of an accident has first aid training and provides support to injured persons within five to seven minutes of the accident they can mitigate the primary causes of death and overall fatalities could be reduced by up to 13 per cent," St John Ambulance NSW CEO Sarah Lance said.

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"We want to ensure that whoever is there at the scene of an incident is not just trained and equipped to provide first aid, but feels that their St John training has enabled them to save a life."

If you're first on scene of any accident knowing how to keep airways clear, stop bleeding and perform CPR can mean the difference between life and death.

Access to a defibrillator also greatly increases the survival rate.

If a defibrillator is used within the first two to three minutes the chance of survival is 70 per cent instead of 10 per cent.

Early defibrillation combined with effective CPR is the best chance of survival in the event of a sudden cardiac arrest.