Westpac (Bribie Island Branch) Rescue Rashie launches to help Australian parents in paediatric CPR emergencies.

Ahead of summer, Westpac has released findings from its Water Safety Survey showing more than half of Australian parents with children aged two to eight (55.8%) would not know the lifesaving CPR instructions needed if they were faced with a drowning emergency.
While many Australian parents are aware of the importance of not waiting for paramedics to arrive in the event of a child drowning (92%), survey results show a lack of awareness about how to respond with correct CPR procedures for children. Two thirds of parents surveyed are unaware of the correct compression to breath ratio, a vital element of paediatric CPRi.
Some parents also have misconceptions about water safety; with over a third believing if their child can swim they are at a reduced risk of drowning and almost a third believing the first sign of a child drowning is splashingi.
Ahead of the peak month for drowning in Australia, Westpac is launching the Westpac Rescue Rashie as part of a new initiative to promote summer safety awareness. Westpac State General Manager QLD, Greg Crocombe, said Rescue Rashies were born earlier this year when Westpac survey results showed two in three Australian parents admit they would have to search for CPR instructions on their smartphone in an emergency. “Westpac has a long history of helping to save Australian lives through our 44-year partnership with the Westpac Lifesaver Rescue Helicopter Service, and this summer we wanted to do something more to help educate Queensland parents about water safety and potentially save lives,” Mr Crocombe said. “Our research shows Queensland parents need extra support and education when it comes to knowing what to do in a drowning emergency. It is a scenario deeply feared but one all parents we need to be prepared for. “In partnership with CPR Kids, we are proud to provide parents with the Westpac Rescue Rashie, which gives them much needed information and support at a time when it is needed the most,” Mr Crocombe said. Former Olympic swimmer, ironman and father of two, Ky Hurst said he knows all too well how quickly things can turn to tragedy in the water and the importance of reacting quickly in an emergency.
“As much as I love the water and have spent my life around it, my wife and I know that accidents can happen, which is why water safety is number one when it comes to our children,” Ky said.
“I loved the idea of the Westpac Rescue Rashie as soon as I saw it. It’s so simple. The instructions on the front and the bright red colour serve as a constant reminder of how to keep your children safe should the worst case scenario become reality,” Ky said.
CPR Kids founder and paediatric nurse Sarah Hunstead said it’s common for parents to have misconceptions about water safety, which is why education about preventive measures and the steps for resuscitation can mean the difference between life and death.
“I meet so many parents who have been in a serious situation and wish they knew at least the basic steps. The Westpac Rescue Rashie is such a smart and practical design. It helps parents by taking them through lifesaving CPR steps while the emergency services make their way to the scene,” Sarah said.
To highlight the importance of CPR knowledge, Westpac has pledged to provide free CPR training for its 33,000 staff, meaning a great many will be prepared to help save a life in an emergency.
Westpac Rescue Rashies are available for $35 each, with proceeds going to Take Heart Australia to fund vital CPR training. Take Heart’s mission is to dramatically increase the survival rate of Australians who suffer a sudden cardiac arrest and the proceeds from the Rescue Rashies will help fund vital CPR training.
Westpac Rescue Rashies are available from westpacrescue.com.au and can be shipped anywhere within Australia.
Westpac will also gift a complimentary Rescue Rashie to the 1,418 Australians who preregistered their interest in the Rescue Rashie trial to thank them for their support.