‘No one knew what to do’ says woman who collapsed in Haywards Heath store

Emma Aldridge SUS-181224-105053001
Emma Aldridge SUS-181224-105053001

A woman who suffered a seizure in a town centre shop is now calling for a change in the law over first aid training.

Emma Aldridge was horrified when she collapsed in Poundland in South Road, Haywards Heath, and later realised no-one knew what to do.

Emma, 34, suffers from non epileptic seizures and can suffer up to 15 episodes a day. “I can’t go out on my own,” she said. “I have to rely on my mother or my partner to take me out.”

Emma, from Burgess Hill, cannot work because of her condition. She was at the till in Poundland in Haywards Heath on December 14 when she had a seizure.

“I suddenly fell but none of the staff knew what to do. The whole place came to a standstill with all the customers watching.

“My partner told staff not to touch me because if someone does it can prolong the episode. I could hear people saying ‘what do we do?’

“When I came round I had been shaken. They put me in a chair and gave me some water. But for no-one to really know what to do is disgusting.”

She was also shocked later when she discovered that there is no legal obligation on shops to provide first aid training for staff and is now calling for a change in the law.

“I think it’s wrong,” she said. “Next time it could be someone having a heart attack.”

A spokesman for Poundland said: “We’re a bit bemused by this. We’ve spoken to our colleagues and they did everything they could to help, including calling an ambulance straightaway.”