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Man who dropped dead at Run Norwich returns a year later with his paramedic and surgeon

Paramedic Dale Gedge saved Tim Warner's life after he suffered a cardiac arrest during the Norwich 10k. Picture: Ian Burt

Paramedic Dale Gedge saved Tim Warner's life after he suffered a cardiac arrest during the Norwich 10k. Picture: Ian Burt

The last time Tim Warner took part in Run Norwich, he died.

Paramedic Dale Gedge saved Tim Warner's life after he suffered a cardiac arrest during the Norwich 10k. Picture: Ian BurtParamedic Dale Gedge saved Tim Warner's life after he suffered a cardiac arrest during the Norwich 10k. Picture: Ian Burt

The Dereham father “dropped dead” for six minutes, having suffered a cardiac arrest 200m from the race’s finish line.

Having survived thanks to the lightning-quick responses of a nearby off duty paramedic, Mr Warner will be returning to the 10k event just a year on from his heart attack.

Mr Warner, who owns WW vans and autos said: “I was dead before I hit the floor. My knees went wobbly and then I don’t remember anything else. A paramedic, Dale Gedge, was about 20m away and saw me go down.

“If it wasn’t for him giving me CPR and someone finding a defibrillator and Medipack so quickly, I wouldn’t be here.”

Paramedic Dale Gedge saved Tim Warner's life after he suffered a cardiac arrest during the Norwich 10k. Picture: Ian BurtParamedic Dale Gedge saved Tim Warner's life after he suffered a cardiac arrest during the Norwich 10k. Picture: Ian Burt

He added: “Because they got to me so quickly I’ve had no major ongoing problems with memory loss. I had a couple of broken ribs from the CPR which was painful, and there have been a couple of health niggles but I stay positive.”

A year on, the 55-year-old will be running the same route with both the paramedic that saved his life, and one of his cardiology surgeons, Dr Ian Williams.

Mr Warner said: “I’m getting more nervous the closer to the Park Run it gets. The training has been tough, I could only walk ten feet when I came home and now I’m running 10km.”

Mr Gedge said: “As paramedics we’re used to being called to a situation and dealing with it once it’s already happened. And then we put the patient in the back of an ambulance and that tends to be the last interaction we have with them.

“It was surreal to witness it happening, and because I was off duty it gave me more opportunity to keep in touch with Tim. His recovery has just gone beyond what we’d expect.”

Mr Warner said: “The main thing we want to get out there is just to tell people to try CPR, even if they’re not fully trained in it. Sometimes people will run away from it because they don’t want to feel guilt if it goes wrong, but that person will be dead anyway if you don’t help.”

Paramedic’s advice on what to do if you find someone unresponsive:

Dale Gedge has issued advice to readers following last year’s incident, he said: “The key message is that doing something, is better than doing nothing.”

• If you find somebody unresponsive and not breathing, call 999 and ask for an ambulance.

• Make sure you know the address or location of where you are. We can’t send an ambulance until we have that information.

• Shake and shout to ascertain if the person will respond to you.

• Tilting their head back, check for normal breathing for no more than 10 seconds.

• If the person is still unresponsive and not breathing properly (i.e occasional gasps) start CPR and shout to see if anybody has a defibrillator nearby.

• Give 30 chest compressions. This allows blood to be pumped around the body.

• Don’t worry about making the situation worse, it can’t get any worse than cardiac arrest.

• By starting CPR, you are at least doubling that person’s chances of survival.

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