Nov 18, 2014 1:04 PM

Manchester schools learning how to save athletes from cardiac arrest

MANCHESTER - Last year there were three cases of cardiac arrest among N.H. athletes, two of them deadly. Cardiac arrest is the number one killer of young athletes. The city of Manchester is taking a step forward educating coaches and athletes on how to save a teammate from the killer without warning.

"If something horrible happens, people there have the right training," said Laura Decoster, Executive Director of New Hampshire Muscular and Skeletal Institute.

Cardiac arrest can happen at any time and without warning. External heat illness and head and neck trauma combined don't come close to the number of cardiac related deaths for young athletes.

"About 40 kids die every year, and to think that a kid dies is terrible. But to think a kid dies because no one knew what to do? It's heart breaking," said Decoster.

Coaches and student athletes in Manchester are taking a step forward, learning what it takes to save a teammate's life.

"The most important part of this training is that we are ready for any kind of emergency, so why not learn this right now ahead of time and be prepared in case something happens," said Hector Urrea, Manchester West Soccer coach.

Decoster said people are often scared to grab the equipment, like an external defibrillator, that could save an athlete.

People see them everywhere and might not give them a second thought, these things are miracles. They save the person's life and they tell you what to do," said Decoster.

More on the types of sports injuries can be found here.

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