Two lifesaving police officers who brought a man back from the brink of death are set to be honoured

The incident happened in Sunderland Road, Horden. Picture: Google.
The incident happened in Sunderland Road, Horden. Picture: Google.

The police officers, who were flagged down on their way to a burglary and ended up bringing a 26-year-old man back from the brink of death, are to receive top national life saving awards.

Now they have been praised as being “the right people in the right place at the right time” and are to receive top national life-saving honours.

PC Philip Gardner and PC Harrison Gott were heading along Sunderland Road, Horden, on the evening of November 4 last year on their way to a burglary which was taking place when they were flagged down

A car was parked by the road side, two women were standing by it and a man was in the back seat where his disabled son had suffered a seizure and stopped breathing.

An ambulance had already been called but PCs Gardner and Gott immediately removed the man from the car, laid him on the pavement and began administering cardiac pulmonary resuscitation (CPR).

The man began breathing again after six rounds of chest compressions and went on to make a full recovery.

Hospital staff later told the man’s family that but for the swift actions of the police officers, he would have died.

Now the two Durham Constabulary officers have both been awarded Royal Humane Society Resuscitation Certificates.

And as well as the awards they have also won the personal praise of Royal Humane Society Secretary, Andrew Chapman.

Speaking at the Society’s London headquarters as he announced the awards, he said : “Put simply the two officers were the right people in the right place at the right time. It was pure chance and good luck that they were passing by on their way to a crime scene.

“Thanks to them though the man is alive today who would otherwise have died. He survived thanks to their rapid and professional treatment. They truly deserve the awards they are to receive. They saved a life.

“At the same time this is another case which emphasises the value of as many people as possible learning CPR techniques. I doubt any-one who has learned it wants to be called on to use it, but as this incident shows, it can, as it did here make the difference between life and death.”

No date has yet been fixed for presentation of the awards.

The roots of the Royal Humane Society stretch back more than two centuries. The Queen is its patron and its president is Princess Alexandra. It is the premier national body for honouring bravery in the saving of human life.

It was founded in 1774 by two of the day's eminent medical men, William Hawes and Thomas Cogan. Their primary motive was to promote techniques of resuscitation.

However, as it emerged that numerous people were prepared to put their own lives at risk to save others, the awards scheme evolved, and today a variety of awards are made depending on the bravery involved.

The Society also awards non health care professionals who perform a successful resuscitation. Since it was set up the Society has considered over 87,000 cases and made over 200,000 awards. The Society is a registered charity which receives no public funding and is dependent on voluntary donations.

It was one of a select number of organisations to receive a donation from the Patron’s fund which was set up to acknowledge work done by organisations of which the Queen is the patron, to mark her 90th birthday.