Heroic Barnstaple support officer praised for saving man’s life

Barnstaple police and fire community support officer, Steve Huxtable helped save a life after a man collapsed near the fire s...

Barnstaple police and fire community support officer, Steve Huxtable helped save a life after a man collapsed near the fire station. Picture: DSFRS - Credit: Archant

A Barnstaple community support officer has been put in for a commendation after saving the life of a man who collapsed near the fire station.

Steve Huxtable was on his way home from work at 5pm on October 12 when he saw a man lying beside the road on Pilton Causeway.

He stopped his car and began chest compressions as the man was not breathing, using the training from his casualty care course.

After carrying out chest compressions alone for six minutes, Steve was joined by an off-duty doctor who carried on with the compressions while Steve phoned for an ambulance.

Steve then took over the compressions again for several more minutes until the casualty started to breathe again.


You may also want to watch:


In his role as a police and fire community support officer (PFCSO), Steve combines his role as a police community support officer (PCSO) with responding as an operational firefighter.

The PFCSO role was an initiative set up by Devon and Cornwall Police and Devon and Somerset Fire and Rescue Service in 2015 to create a combined role that would meet the needs of local communities.

Most Read

Crew manager Craig Murfitt, who manages Steve at Barnstaple Fire Station, saw the incident as he left work.

He said: “If Steve had not taken action that afternoon I believe the outcome may not have been great.

“The ambulance crew informed him that the casualty would have probably suffered brain damage or died if Steve had not taken the action he did.

“It was very clear that Steve had everything under control. Steve is an excellent ambassador for the fire service and his role as a police and fire community support officer.”

Steve has been nominated for a commendation for his part in saving the man’s life.

Barnstaple Sector Inspector Andy Wills added: “It’s really important that whilst we have come to expect great things from Steve, we publicly recognise and share the pride we all feel for him as colleagues for his involvement in this incident.

“As a community we are fortunate to be served by him as he continues to seamlessly blend his fire-fighting and policing duties across his role, and respond to those in need both on and off duty.

“His positivity and commitment are an example to us all.”

Become a Supporter

This newspaper has been a central part of community life for many years. Our industry faces testing times, which is why we're asking for your support. Every contribution will help us continue to produce local journalism that makes a measurable difference to our community.

Become a Supporter
Comments powered by Disqus