A firefighter from Dieppe, N.B. is downplaying his actions, but his training may have saved the life of a future firefighter.

Luc Robichaud was delivering a certification course to become a firefighter in Sackville, N.B. on Saturday, June 3 when one of his students began choking during their lunch break.

He immediately realized it was a full blockage and began performing abdominal thrusts and some back blows.

The whole ordeal only lasted 20 to 30 seconds, but the modest firefighter knows his actions may have saved the trainee’s life.

“If you’re choking, you’re not breathing. If nobody is doing anything then obviously the outcome would be bad. But I think that anyone who has basic understanding of the Heimlich maneuver, or what to do during a choking incident, would do that,” said Robichaud.

Being a firefighter means constant training and most of the day-to-day is preparing for emergencies and not responding to them.  

Dieppe Fire Department Platoon Chief Denis Roberge called Robichaud a dedicated firefighter who is always prepared.

He said typically choking situations are very time sensitive.

“These are the types of incidents that if someone doesn’t intervene right away they quickly escalate and become rather urgent, rather quickly,” said Roberge.

Robichaud and the student have been in touch recently and everything is fine with him.

When an emergency does happen, Robichaud says take action and stay calm, and if you do have the training, trust your instincts and your skills. 

“Do a favour to your loved ones, your peers, and find a course, take a CPR course, it will cover choking, because it can make a difference with someone you know or a total stranger,” said Robichaud.

Roberge said if anyone is interested in CPR courses they can reach out to any emergency service agency in their community and they will get directed to either private companies or public services to access the training.

“The more people know, the more knowledge people have on how to act in these moments the better chance we have of good outcomes,” said Roberge.

For more New Brunswick news visit our dedicated provincial page.

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