HEALTH: How to use a defibrillator!

Following on from our recent piece about defibrillators in Halifax, here’s a more comprehensive guide to these essential pieces of equipment and how we should all be prepared to use one!

An automated external defibrillator (AED) is a portable device that checks the heart rhythm and can send an electric shock to the heart to try to restore a normal rhythm. AEDs are used to treat sudden cardiac arrest (SCA). They are increasingly being installed in public places and at public buildings as they are recognised to be life-savers. New defibrillators have recently been installed in Halifax in the Woolshops by Marks and Spencers and outside Harveys.

What is SCA?

SCA is a condition in which the heart suddenly and unexpectedly stops beating. When this happens, blood stops flowing to the brain and other vital organs.

SCA usually causes death if it’s not treated within minutes. In fact, each minute of SCA leads to a 10 percent reduction in survival. Using an AED on a person who is having SCA may save the person’s life.

Can I Use An AED?

AEDs can be operated by untrained members of the public. almost anyone can operate one as the unit provides both written and spoken instructions. The aim of the AED is to keep a patient alive long enough for trained emergency personnel to arrive and take over. See the really useful video below:

So we all have duty to get to know where our local AEDs are located an, as you might expect, there’s a useful website that shows the locations of AEDs –


WATER: Sign Up For Support

Sign Up For Yorkshire Water Priority Services

Did you know that Yorkshire Water operate a priority services register – whether it’s additional support if you’ve got no water, help reading your bills, providing your bills in different font sizes or in braille, or if you just need a bit of help to pay your bill.

Sign Up To Priority Services

Your water supply

If Yorkshire Water plan to interrupt your water supply, they can help you:

  • – If you wouldn’t be able to read a letter, they can telephone you or visit to let you know in advance.
  • – If you have difficulty hearing they can send you a postcard or letter or inform you by text
  • – If you have a serious illness or disability they can help you to obtain temporary water supplies.
  • – If you’re a home dialysis patient, please let them know.

They can also provide advice about making taps and appliances in your home easier to use, and give you information about your water quality.


They can help you by sending your bill, or other information:

– in large print
– in Braille
– in audio format (CD or over the phone)
– to a nominated friend or family member.

Keeping you safe

Bogus callers may try to trick you by saying there’s an urgent problem with your water. Yorkshire Water recommend that you set up a free security password in advance, so that you can confirm the identity of anyone calling at your home and claiming to be from Yorkshire Water. If you’d like to register, please call them on 0800 1 38 78 78.

For your own safety, always ask for proof of identification. All Yorkshire Water’s Colleagues and Service Partners will carry identity cards displaying the holder’s photograph. If you’re in any doubt you can contact them to check whether a caller is genuine, quoting the employee number printed on their identity card.

Sign Up To Priority Services

MONEY: Benefit Info

There’s a massive amount of really useful information on the Department for Work and Pensions’ website, but it can be a little daunting to navigate. To help you get started, here are some really useful links about the many benefits available, who can claim them and how to claim them:

HEALTH: Heat Exhaustion

As the summer gets into its stride, we thought we’d share the St John Ambulance’s advice on how to treat someone with heat exhaustion.

Heat exhaustion is caused by a loss of salt and water from the body, usually through excessive sweating. It develops slowly and usually happens to people who aren’t used to hot, humid weather. People who are unwell are more likely to get it, especially if they are suffering from vomiting and diarrhoea. A dangerous and common cause of heat exhaustion is when the body produces more heat than it can cope with.

This can happen when someone takes a non-prescription drug, like ecstasy, which can stop the body from regulating its temperature properly. If someone gets hot and sweats a lot from dancing as well, they may get overheated and dehydrated, giving them heat exhaustion. If treated quickly, someone suffering from heat exhaustion should start feeling better quickly. But if not treated, they could develop heatstroke which can lead to death.

Watch the video for some good advice:

OUTDOORS: Countryside News Out Now!

The latest edition of Countryside News from Calderdale Council with a programme of  walks and events which covers the period 1 April to 30 September 2018 is now available.

The council were expecting to only have information online this time but thanks to support from Public Health, they have been able to produce a printed leaflet for Spring and Summer this year.  The printed leaflet can be found in local Tourist Information Centres, Sports Centres, Libraries and Ogden Water Visitor Centre.

In the leaflet you will find a brief description of walks, events and practical days; to find out more details you will need to visit the Council’s website. If you do not have access to a computer at home, free access is available in local libraries or you can ring 01422 284415 to find out the information you need (answerphone available for out of hours calls but please leave your name and number so they can call you back).

There are a wide range of walks, events and activities on offer again this spring and summer including bat walks, stream dipping, practical conservation days, moth trapping and a number of opportunities to improve your gardening skills at Manor Heath Park.

Calderdale Help in Bereavement Service

Calderdale Help in Bereavement Service (CHIBS) was established in 1984 by a group of people who felt there was a need for bereavement support.

Since then it has gone from strength to strength, obtaining charity status in 2003.  CHIBS is now working with a pool of 50 Befrienders, all whom have undergone a criminal record check (DBS), are professionally trained and receive regular supervision.

On average, the charity sees  around 150 clients per year but this is on the increase.  The range of support can range from a single phone call to a number of visits over a period of months.

You can contact them on 0845 0099220 (Adult Line) Or 0845 0099221 (Child Line) and the service is free and confidential. You can also contact them through their website:

ENERGY: Power cut? Call 105

There is a new national phone number “105” which was launched by electricity network operators for customers to call should they need to report or get information about a power cut in their area.

Key points to note about this service are:

  • Dialling 105 will put customers through to their local electricity network operator – the company that manages the cables, power lines and substations that deliver electricity into homes and businesses in their area.
  • 105 is just one of the ways that customers can contact their electricity network operator. They can also contact them by phone or via their website, and most network operators are on social media too.
  • 105 is a free service for people in England, Scotland and Wales.
  • Customers can call 105 no matter who they buy their electricity from.
  • Customers can also call 105 if they spot damage to electricity power lines and substations that could put anyone in danger. If there’s a serious immediate risk, they should call the emergency services too.