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Advert aims to prevent choking deaths

Would you know what to do if your baby was choking?


New research shows that 79 per cent of parents do NOT know the correct technique.

The survey by St John Ambulance also found that 58 per cent said that choking is a major fear for them.

A new animated 40-second advert ‘The Chokeables’ airs on TV from today showing how to save a baby.

Sue Killen, St John Ambulance chief executive, said: “Knowing what to do in an emergency can be the difference between life and death, especially with something like choking.

“We all know how time-pressed parents are so this film makes it as easy as possible to learn first aid – in less than 40 seconds we can all know a skill that could save a life.”

The all-star line-up sees the likes of Johnny Vegas, David Mitchell, David Walliams and Sir John Hurt take on the voice of an animated object that could potentially choke babies.

Common choking hazards include coins, phlegm, marbles and pen lids.

Dislodging an object that is blocking your child’s airways is a frightening experience for everyone involved.

The survey also found that 40 per cent of parents have witnessed a child choking.

The recommended first aid manoeuvre consists of putting the baby face down on an adult’s thigh, giving up to five back blows and, if that does not work, up to five chest thrusts.

It is then recommended parents call an ambulance if both positions fail.

The St John Ambulance’s research found that only 29 per cent were aware of the correct recommended technique.

It also showed that 53 per cent of parents believe that knowing first aid would help them feel better prepared and less scared.

The advert follows a campaign by parents Joanne and Dan Thompson for every member of staff in nurseries to have adequate first aid training.

Their nine-month-old daughter Millie died in 2012 when she choked on some mashed potato at nursery and staff were unable to save her.

For more information visit

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