BLUFFTON, Sc. (WTOC) - Two pieces of life-saving equipment were stolen in the Lowcountry over Memorial Day Weekend.
Bluffton Fire tells WTOC when they went to perform their May inspections of Automated External Defibrillators, (AEDs), they found that they were stolen from places of public access.
The defibrillators were located on the Bluffton Linear Trail and Alljoy Public Dock. Inspectors found the areas were also vandalized. The two AED’s were donated to the Bluffton Township Fire District in 2017 through the Alliance and Defibs Save Lives Campaign.
“One of the things about AED’s is they don’t really have monetary value," said Claire Shumway, Arrhythmia Alliance Program & Design Coordinator. “AED’s have value only in the fact that they can be used to save lives, so having these things stolen doesn’t profit anyone. It just damages the opportunity to help save someone’s life if a sudden cardiac arrest event would take place in these locations.”
If you have any information on the missing devices, you can contact Bluffton Police at 843.706.4550, or the Arrhythmia Alliance at 843.415.1886. The safe return of the devices could save a life in the event of a heart attack.
“It’s really heartbreaking that these lifesaving machines have been stolen. Again, they have no monetary value. You can’t sell them. If you put them online to sell them secondhand, they all have a serial number that’s an identifiable individual machine. You can trace them, we can track them if you do put them up for sale. The only thing you’re doing by stealing these things is preventing people from saving lives.”