Volunteers who are trained in basic life support techniques and respond to emergencies on behalf of the ambulance service, The first such scheme was started at Thorncombe in West Dorset and has since been followed by schemes at Cranborne, Marnhull, Broadwindsor, Kimmeridge,  and Monkey World.

Dr Richard Cummins, from Seattle, USA discovered that if a series of events took place in a set sequence, a heart attack victim has a greater chance of survival. These events are known as the "Chain of Survival".


  • Early Access
  • Early Resuscitation
  • Early Defibrillation
  • Early Advanced Life Support

When put into practice by increasing public awareness, training in basic life support and community based Automated External Defibrillators, these events have improved the pre hospital survival rate to between 25% and 30%.



The process of a call out for the Lulworth First Responder Unit is as follows:


A member of the public in our area makes a 999 call requesting an ambulance.

South Western Ambulance NHS Trust Control Centre takes details and the operator decides whether the First Responder Unit is necessary.

If required, a call is made to the volunteers on duty.


Volunteers  operate in pairs.


Volunteers mobilise, and proceed to the emergency.
We don't have any blue lights or sirens and have to comply with speed limits and all other normal aspects of traffic laws.


On arrival, our First Responders will deal with the situation as required by their training         

 and if necessary contact the ambulance control for further guidance


 The First Responders tend to the patient, assisting him or her as required, until the ambulance unit arrives


The ambulance staff take over and if their assistance is no longer required, the First Responder Unit stands down.

We can only respond to a call from the Ambulance control centre to attend an emergency, so if you need us, dial 999 first. An ambulance will always be called to attend too.




Ambulances are dispatched in response to 999 emergency calls based on the clinical need of the patient.


The calls are prioritised according to the seriousness of the patient's clinical needs:

In March 2011 South Western Ambulance NHS Foundation Trust started using the Pathfinder system to break calls down in to their severity. Please use the link below from the SWAST website to see how the system works.

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