Estonian ferry operator TS Laevad, which operates ferry services between the mainland and the major Western Estonian islands of Saaremaa and Hiiumaa, has installed automated external defibrillators (AEDs) on its ferries that can be used to administer first aid in the event of a cardiac medical emergency.
The wall-mounted AEDs on the Leiger, the Tiiu, the Tõll and the Piret are located next to the R-Kiosk self-serve coffee machine on the passenger deck; the AED on the Regula is located across from the bar at the stern of the dining deck.
The company decided to install the AEDs on its ferries in an effort to increase the safety of its passengers and crews in case of sudden cardiac arrest, said Meelis Mägi, head of safety at sea at TS Laevad, according to a company press release.
"Heart attacks are one of the primary causes of death in Estonia, however in the event of fast and accurate first aid, it is possible to save someone's life," Mägi said. "The fully automatic CardiAid AED devices installed on board are the easiest and most dependable defibrillators in Estonia."
Although AEDs are designed to be usable without any prior training, the company still provided device training to its employees in November and December. "Thus, our ferry crews are acquainted with the use of the devices, and in the course of training we also reviewed other fundamentals of the provision of first aid," he said.
The safety chief added that the ferries being equipped with the devices and with them the capability to respond quickly is priceless, as in case of emergency at sea, one must wait for paramedics' assistance at least as long as it takes for the ferry to reach port, which can take time.
Editor: Aili Vahtla