(Albany NY) Assemblyman Felix Ortiz, (Brooklyn), is urging his fellow elected officials to equip law enforcement vehicles to save lives. Ortiz has introduced legislation that would require that law enforcement vehicles be equipped with automated external defibrillators and to require that those driving the vehicles be trained in the operation of this life saving device.
“One of my constituents contacted me with her story of how her brother, a state trooper for 33 years, died from a heart attack after struggling with his arrestee. He called for backup during this incident, and if the officer who came to his aid had a vehicle equipped with a defibrillator, her brother would have been 50 percent more likely to survive. It is a travesty that we can provide defibrillators in schools, gyms and other public venues, but not in the vehicles of the men and women who work each day to protect our lives,” said Ortiz. “I think everyone will be able to agree that we owe our dedicated troopers at least this,” Ortiz continued.
Not only would these defibrillators help to save lives of the police officers who may suffer from sudden cardiac arrest due to stress in the line of duty, but it will also help to save the countless victims that they aid. Communities have greater numbers of law enforcement officers than emergency medical service personnel and these law enforcement officers are frequently the first on the scene in an emergency medical situation,” Ortiz stated. “By placing these devices in law enforcement vehicles, we will be giving countless victims of sudden cardiac arrest a greater chance of survival”.
“I expect that my fellow elected officials will recognize the need for this bill to pass. As a public servant, it is my duty to ensure that my fellow New Yorkers are given the best medical attention available. My bill to place defibrillators in emergency vehicles is an important step in guaranteeing this,” concluded Ortiz.