Tamworth lifesaver Cameron McFarlane hit a milestone in Inverell this week, educating over 20,000 students on how to save a life as part of his school CPR awareness campaign.
Mayor Paul Harmon congratulated Mr McFarlane on his achievement during a workshop at Inverell Public School on Thursday.
Mr McFarlane also visited Bingara Central School, Delungra Public School, Inverell High School and Ross Hill Public School throughout the week, and will teach Bundarra Central School students today.
“I’m actually hoping to get an interview with the education minister of NSW to try and get this implemented into the primary schools as a part of their curriculum,” he said.
He said it was a vital skill for both high school and primary aged students, who spend so much time in rivers, dams and pools.
“I think it’s great you have the opportunity to be here today to learn what is so simple to do but actually saves people’s lives,” Cr Harmon said. He said a recent health scare reminded him of the importance of the skill.
“My father recently had a very severe heart attack,” he said.
“He was in the ambulance when he had his major attack and they started CPR straight away.” Cr Harmon realised if they hadn’t arrived in time, he would have had to recall the skills he’d learnt as a volunteer fireman years before.
“It’s something that stays with you,” he assured.
Mr McFarlane took the students through the steps they should take if someone isn’t breathing, and quizzed them on emergency numbers and when it was safe to approach the person.
He demonstrated CPR on adult, child and infant dummies, and the recovery position with the help of student Louis Grebert. The children then perfected their technique with the dummies.
Last month, a group of locals went through similar training when Inverell Lions Club donated several defibrillators to the town’s sporting fields. AED supplier John Moelker told the group CPR was vital in treating sudden cardiac arrest, before teaching them how to use the machines.