‘Save a Selfie’ is an interactive mobile app that allows members of the public to take ‘selfies’ alongside emergency equipment such as defibrillators.
The images are uploaded to the platform and their locations are tagged on a map, making critical life-saving devices easy to find for both the public and the emergency services.
The locations of devices, which include first aid kits and life rings, can also be shared on social media.
Dublin Fire Brigade member and paramedic Seán Peters said people typically walk past about 15 life-saving devices every day, but there is no data base of them or their locations.
There are 8,000 to 10,000 defibrillators in Ireland. However, about 10% of them are not working due to batteries being dead or the devices being out of date.
As part of the campaign, which received a grant of €5,000 from the Social Innovation Fund Ireland, the 4,000 members of The Order of Malta (of which Peters is a member) will complete more than 8,000 visits over a four week period to physically check automated external devices (AEDs).
The initiative is the brainchild of Code for Ireland, a group of computer programmers who volunteer to solve social issues.
Seán, who has a background in smartphone technology and emergency communications, was assigned to assist Code for Ireland.
“Generally, if an incident happens on a GAA pitch or a rugby pitch, there is emergency equipment available and people are competently trained to use it,” he says.
“However, problems arise in the middle of towns and cities when the emergency services are called after someone has had a heart attack. We don’t know where the nearest defibrillator is located.
“We want to maximise the resources that are already there and improve survival rates. “Dublin Airport has a very high success rate of survivable cardiac arrests because there are approximately 30 defibrillators there.”
‘Save a Selfie’ will be launched at the Mansion House tomorrow .
The app is available from the app store and the Google play store and can be downloaded from www.saveaselfie.org.