The Chokeables advert saves 42 lives

Award-winning campaign viewed by more than 8 million people

The Chokeables

Members of the public have credited our campaign, The Chokeables, with saving 42 young lives.

The Chokeables is a 40-second ad that demonstrates how to save a choking baby, featuring the celebrity voices of David Mitchell, David Walliams, Johnny Vegas and Sir John Hurt. It’s been viewed by more than 8 million people across Facebook, YouTube and Twitter.

Stories have been sent to us about 42 babies and children who have choked on a variety of things, including a candle, a coin, a sweet wrapper, a sticker and a grape.

In each instance, the person who leapt into action said that they’d learned the technique from The Chokeables video, which has also been shared over 155,000 times on our Facebook page alone.

‘I'm just so grateful I saw the advert - it saved her life.’

Tiffany Sims, a mum of two from Bury St Edmunds, saved a little boy in a café after seeing the advert on Facebook. She said:

‘When we realised what was happening, the little boy was bright purple and very distressed. We all panicked, but I’d seen the St John Ambulance advert, The Chokeables, on Facebook just a couple of days before and I remembered what to do. I gave the baby backslaps and cleared his airway quickly. It was very scary and upsetting, but I’m so glad I knew what to do.’

Hannah Gilmartin, whose 11-month old daughter choked on a tealight candle, said:

‘I was horrified when my 11-month old daughter started choking on a tea light candle she'd picked up, but I followed the steps from The Chokeables advert and managed to save her. I think I was more upset than she was once it was over! I'm just so grateful I saw the advert - it saved her life.’

The ad, which is being aired across several television channels, has racked up millions of views across YouTube, Facebook, Twitter, and media coverage.  Estimates indicate that 20.9 million saw it in its first week on television.

Sue Killen, CEO of St John Ambulance, said:

'It’s wonderful that the public have embraced these characters and taken the technique on board. We’re thrilled that people have been sharing the ad with their family and friends, and the fact that children have been saved from choking is just incredible. These stories are living proof that life saving first aid can be quick and easy to learn – and once you know what to do, you have the confidence to take action quickly and potentially save a life.'

The ad was launched after new research showed that 79% of parents did not know how to help a choking baby, despite 58% saying it was a major concern. 40% of parents reported having seen their baby choke.*

*Research carried out in November 2014 by Opinion Matters on behalf of St John Ambulance. 4,000 parents in England surveyed.

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