Off duty firefighters tried desperately to save the life of a man who had a heart attack an hour before competitors in the tour de France raced through Essex. The crew from Romford’s Red Watch alongside a firefighter from Loughborough Fire and Rescue Station in Leicestershire and St John Ambulance battled to revive the man before the Air Ambulance Team arrived. Sadly the man died later in hospital.

Romford Crew Manager Nick Gunn and firefighters Karen Jackson, Nick Wilson and Steve Bird had travelled to the village of Moreton to watch the historic event.

Nick Gunn said: “My girlfriend lives in the village so I thought it would be an excellent place to watch the race. I saw a St John Ambulance man running and knew something was up. We followed him and found a firefighter from Loughborough called Colin Johnson attending to the elderly man. We offered our help and put all of our first aid training into practice. Once the Air Ambulance arrived they quickly assigned us roles and we worked for about an hour to try and bring him back to life.

“All of us sprang into action and everyone did all they could but sadly it wasn’t enough on this occasion. We have been in touch with the family to offer our deepest condolences and we’ve received a heart warming note thanking us for giving him a fighting chance.”

Rob McTaggart
Senior Communications Officer, London Fire Brigade