Multiple U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) emergency medical technicians are being credited with saving the life of a woman who was found unresponsive in her wheelchair at Washington Dulles International Airport on Sunday.
According to officials, CBP officers were alerted of an unresponsive woman in a wheelchair near the baggage belt around 5:30 p.m. Authorities say the woman, a 54-year-old Indian national and U.S. lawful permanent resident, had just arrived on a 15-hour flight from Doha, United Arab Emirates.
At 5:38 p.m., CBP Officer Nicholas Karstetter and Supervisory CBP Officer Herman Hundal, who are both certified EMTs, responded and immediately initiated CPR and called for an Automated External Defibrillator (AED).
Two additional CBP officers, Chief Leo Carbone and Supervisor Harmanpreet Singh arrived after next and took turns administering CPR while Kartsetter implemented a King airway device.
Officials say at 5:46 p.m., Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority (MWAA) Fire and Rescue arrived and assumed lifesaving efforts.
CBP officers described the situation as ” a harrowing 10 minutes” of lifesaving efforts.
The woman was taken to the hospital and by 7:30 p.m., officers say she was breathing on her own.
“Though the woman didn’t regain a pulse until she was enroute to the hospital, the incredible lifesaving efforts by Customs and Border Protection EMTs during those critical first 10 minutes have helped her to survive so that she can spend more time with her family and friends again, and that is a great story,” said Daniel Escobedo, CBP’s Area Port Director for the Area Port of Washington, DC. “CBP is comprised of many compassionate and caring professional law enforcement officers who have volunteered to serve an additional duty as EMTs to ensure that travelers suffering medical distress have a fighting chance at life.”