APTA | Passenger Transport
November 3, 2008

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GO Transit Adds Defibrillators to Rail Cars, Stations

When it comes to matters of the heart, Toronto’s GO Transit is showing its customers how much it cares. In partnership with The Mikey Network and the Toronto EMS Cardiac Safe City Program, GO Transit launched a vital, life-saving initiative Oct. 21 by introducing public-access defibrillators, called “MIKEYs,” throughout its system.
Through the “MIKEY on the GO” program, GO Transit placed 40 of the units on the accessible car of every GO train, and installed the remaining 59 at the busiest stations along the Lakeshore Line, at the end stations of GO’s other six lines, at Toronto Union Station, and at all layover facilities. These electronic devices deliver an electronic shock to the heart through the chest wall to restore the heart to its normal rhythm, and can increase a sudden cardiac arrest victim’s chance of survival if used within the first critical moments following an incident.
Jessica Kosmack, communications specialist with GO Transit, said all front-line employees are trained in cardiopulmonary resuscitation and first aid, and all GO personnel on board trains and at stations with MIKEY units have received mandatory training by Toronto EMS staff on how to use the defibrillator devices.
“We’re excited about reaching out to so many GO travelers—more than 200,000 on a typical weekday—plus the staff who will also have access to the units,” said Mikey Network Chairman Hugh Heron. “We have two major goals: to place MIKEYs in as many public places as possible, and to educate the public about heart-healthy living, in the hope that the units won’t have to be used.”

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