Real life: Ian's story

Ian Brown with paramedics who saved his lifeA south London plumber is one of 362 people who survived an out-of-hospital cardiac arrest in London last year – making it the best survival rate in the country.

Ian Brown, 50 from Sidcup, was at work on a construction site in Lewisham in May when he suddenly collapsed and stopped breathing.

Ian said: “It was the end of the day and I was on my way to drop off some equipment in the site office. Normally my workmate does that and I pick up our van from the car park. It was lucky that it happened where it did.”

Rydon’s Heathside & Lethbridge development Site Manager Scott Fraser, who found Ian almost immediately after he’d collapsed, said: “He had fallen on his face, was grunting and his face was turning purple. I realised how serious this was and my colleague Mel Skilton and I started CPR and someone dialled 999.”

Mel added: “I’ve known basic life support for over 12 years but normally you see blood and cuts on a construction site, and nothing like what Ian suffered. It’s great to see him do so well so soon but hopefully it was the first and last time I have to witness anything like that.”

Forest Hill Emergency Medical Technician (EMT) Adrian Keller said: “His workmates helped to save his life by starting CPR so quickly, and he even started talking in the ambulance. We diagnosed that he’d had a heart attack that led to the cardiac arrest and took him straight to the specialist centre at King’s College Hospital.”

Ian said: “Thanks just seems a silly little word but it was just amazing how all cogs fit perfectly on that day and I’m here today, fitter than ever before.”

Pictured here (left to right): Adam Thatcher (Paramedic - Greenwich), Adrian Keller (Emergency Medical Technician - Forest Hill), Ian Brown, Kevin Pritchard (Paramedic - Lee)