A LOCAL football club is set to see life-saving equipment put in place before the end of the year in a move that has been described as “really good” by local councillor Eoghan O’Brien (FF).
Malahide United got the go-ahead recently after Fingal County Council granted the football club permission to install a defibrillator at the grounds in Malahide Castle Park, near Malahide Castle Demesne.
The club already has a defibrillator in place at their home ground at Gannon Park in Malahide.
Welcoming the news, Cllr O’Brien said the new technology will make a “huge difference” to members in the local club.
“They are currently in the process of getting it installed but getting the permission was the first step. It will be a huge thing for health and safety and it’s really good news for the club and all its members,” he said.
Speaking to the Gazette, Fiona Murphy, operations and welfare manager at Malahide United Football Club, said that having a defibrillator in place for a sports club is very important.
“Especially where large groups are concerned,” she said. “We have a large club with about 1,200 members and we have a lot of teams playing in Malahide Castle Park, as well as a lot of visiting teams.
“We have one already in Gannon Park and when we were doing some defibrillator training with some of our managers and coaches, we enquired about the location of the defibrillator at Malahide Castle Park.
“We were surprised to learn that there wasn’t one there,” she said.
Malahide United then proceeded to seek permission from the council for the installation of the medical equipment for the Malahide Castle Park grounds.
“It’s one of those things that people don’t think about until they need them. But it is peace of mind for the club and the committee to know that we have one there if we need it. There’s also a gym at Gannon Park which is available for anyone to use so it would be available for someone using the gym if they needed it either.”
According to Fiona, a defibrillator costs approximately €1,000 to put in place and one-night training courses are necessary to teach club members how to use the equipment.
There are 30 club managers and coaches who are trained to use the equipment at Malahide United.
The local football club hope to have the defibrillator installed this year.