NORWALK - A quick-thinking sheriff's employee helped to save a woman who collapsed while at work in Norwalk last week.The woman, who was not identified, collapsed near her desk while speaking with co-workers Thursday afternoon in the Norwalk office of the Los Angeles County Department of Public Social Services, located on Norwalk Boulevard. Her co-workers came to her aid and saw that she had apparently fainted. Commander Daryl Evans of the Sheriff's Technical Services Division was in the building, along with several other Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department employees. He was alerted to what was happening by DPSS workers. Evan and several Sheriff's Department civilian employees ran towards the DPSS office to assist. They were led to the 6th floor work area where they saw the woman, who appeared to be semi-conscious, lying on the floor. Evans asked the woman's co-workers questions about her actions prior to her collapse, checked her breathing and pulse, and talked to the woman in an attempt to get her to respond. Meanwhile, a Sheriff's civilian manager checked with DPSS workers to ensure 911 had been called, then went to the elevators to guide paramedics into the office. Evans checked the vital signs of the woman as she lay on the floor and noticed that her pulse and breathing had stopped. He quickly started CPR chest compressions. One Sheriff's employee said she was impressed with her boss, because not only was he focused on the job at hand, but he also had the presence of mind to direct DPSS staff to move away from the area to make room for emergency personnel, and even asked them to contact the victim's family. Evans continued life-saving procedures, including rapid chest compressions for about 10 minutes until Los Angeles County Fire paramedics were able to arrive and take over. More than once she began to breathe but then stopped. Fire paramedics continued CPR and used a portable defibrillator to help the victim to regain a pulse before she was transported to a local hospital. Hours later, everyone was relieved to hear that although her recovery would take time, the woman was stable and her vital signs were normal. "I felt an overwhelming sense of pride," one worker said. "Commander Evans is our office hero." When asked about his life-saving efforts, Evans humbly said, "I was just doing my job and I'm really glad she will be OK. But this should remind us that everyone should learn CPR, because those first several minutes after losing vital signs are critical for a healthy recovery."
********** Published: September 20, 2012 - Volume 11 - Issue 23