Islington businesses to get life-saving training for terrorist attacks

COUNTER terrorism police have teamed up with the British Red Cross to train workers in how to react in the aftermath of a terrorist attack.

Officers from Islington and Camden’s counter terrorism units will be joined by Red Cross first aid experts to give life-saving training to people who work in the crowded areas that are most likely to be targets, such as King’s Cross station and the Emirates Stadium.

They will teach specific skills that could help save lives in the event of a terrorist attack or other major incident such as a gas main explosion or bus crash.

Sergeant Andrew Wadeson, who heads Islington Police’s counter terrorism unit, said: “At the moment the threat level from international terrorism is severe. That means an attack is highly likely.

“If an incident occurs it will take a few minutes for the first emergency services to respond. We will not be there when it happens. We are equipping people who will be there with the skills to react.

“Our aim is to make people aware of what to look for leading up to attack, and if an attack or major incident does take place, make sure they are better prepared to respond to it. This will make Islington and Camden safer.”

The programme was launched at Islington Police Station, in Tolpuddle Street, Islington, on Friday.

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Over the next year, workers will get special first aid training tailored towards the kinds of injuries that are more likely to occur in terrorist attacks, including wounds with embedded glass or shrapnel, burns from explosions and fractures.

British Red Cross community based first aid trainer Katie Pavoni, who will be the lead trainer, said: “These are life-saving skills and anybody can save a life. Our aim is to get a first aider on every street corner, so they can start life-saving treatment before the arrival of the emergency services.”

In what is the first partnership of its kind, people will also be given training in other key skills such as managing by-standers, dealing with walking wounded, delivering emotional support and prioritising casualties.

Police Constable Helen Billany, of Camden Police’s counter terrorism team, said: “The threat is very, very real and we can’t be complacent. You never know what’s round the corner. We want to get more first aid out there so people can help save lives, lessen the impact on the immediate community and even help get everything back up and running more quickly after an incident.”