The Knowledge + programme was launched this week. It will equip 17,500 mytaxi drivers with essential first aid skills, and knowledge of how to handle emergency situations. For example, acid attacks, terrorist incidents, and medical crises.

A survey of 1,300 drivers revealed that more and more of them are first on the scene in emergency incidents.

The survey showed:

  • half of respondents had been booked as an alternative to an ambulance
  • 14 respondents had women give birth in their cabs
  • 24% of drivers had come to the aid of the public in a terrorist incident.

St John Ambulance is providing group training, and a series of first aid training videos as part of the programme. Drivers will have training in vital first aid, covering emergencies such as choking, acid attacks, CPR, and severe bleeding.

In time, the cabs will be equipped with first aid kits and defibrillators.

Michelle Kerrigan, St John Ambulance National Partnerships Manager said, 'St John Ambulance is delighted to be working with mytaxi to develop life saving skills amongst their network of drivers. Taxi drivers are increasingly first on the scene in an emergency, and we know that administering first aid in those crucial first few minutes can be the difference between life and death.'