Stoneybatter welcomes Dublin’s first ‘phone box’ defibrillator

About 50 local people gathered on Saturday for unveiling after months of fundraising

Alan Ecock, who organised the installation, with assistant chief fire officer John Keogh in Stoneybatter. Photograph: Tom Honan

Alan Ecock, who organised the installation, with assistant chief fire officer John Keogh in Stoneybatter. Photograph: Tom Honan


About 50 local people gathered in Stoneybatter, Dublin 7, on Saturday for the unveiling of the capital’s first “phone box” public defibrillator.

The defibrillator is fitted in a traditional Irish green and white phone box on Aughrim St. The installation was organised by local resident Alan Ecock who spotted a similar installation in Killarney when on holidays last year.

The device was installed in conjunction with the Heart of Ireland project, which is fitting Automatic External Defibrillators (AEDS) into phone boxes in towns and villages around the Republic. There are now 22 such installations in nine counties.

Organisers said the event was the culmination of months of local fundraising and with the assistance of Dublin City councillors.

“This initiative is so important for us in Stoneybatter and will help us support the community and save lives,” said Mr Ecock. “We see this as just the start, and, with the support of Dublin City Council, we might just see more across the city.”

Dublin Fire Brigade assistant chief fire officer John Keogh commended the local community for organising the installation.

“I was fortunate enough to give two awards recently on behalf of Dublin Fire Brigade,” he said. “Two people happened to be in the right place at the right time. A person went down – no pulse, not breathing.

“They rang 999 and were talked through what to do and how to do it. They were asked was there a defibrillator nearby but there wasn’t.

“Simultaneously Dublin Fire brigade were activated and within five minutes we had a fire engine, an ambulance and an advanced paramedic crew on the scene. One shock is all it took for that man to survive.”

Irish Heart Foundation resuscitation manager Brigid Sinnott said the device would greatly increase an individual’s chances of survival in the event of a cardiac arrest.

“When a person suffers a cardiac arrest, their chance of survival decreases by 10 per cent every minute that passes without CPR and defibrillation,” she said.

“If CPR is commenced immediately, the person’s chance of survival doubles. AEDs are simple to use and need to be available, accessible and in working order to make the difference in communities.

“We are delighted that the local people in Stoneybatter will benefit from this new AED and it will improve their chance of surviving an out of hospital cardiac arrest in their community.”