Is­abella, 5, di­als 999 af­ter find­ing mum col­lapsed

Rochdale Observer - - TRAGEDY OF SWIM STAR WHO STRUGGLED TO CARE FOR DIS - Sam.yarwood@trin­i­tymir­ @sam­yarwood89

AGIRL of five has been hailed a hero for dialling 999 in the mid­dle of the night af­ter find­ing her mum un­con­scious on the kitchen floor.

Is­abella Hib­bert, who was only four at the time, man­aged to find and un­lock her mum Chelsea’s mo­bile phone be­fore ring­ing for an am­bu­lance.

The young­ster was then able to give the call han­dler her ad­dress so they could send help, and clearly an­swered ques­tions asked by the han­dler, such as ‘is your mummy breath­ing,’ and ‘is your mummy awake.’

She then dragged her lit­tle chair from the liv­ing room to the front door, so she could reach the keys to open it for the paramedics, be­fore ring­ing her nana again on Chelsea’s phone – to tell her what had hap­pened.

Chelsea, 27, from Shaw, was taken to hospi­tal and has re­cov­ered from her or­deal but is still un­der­go­ing tests to find out what caused her to col­lapse.

She said: “I don’t re­mem­ber much, all I re­mem­ber is wak­ing up on the kitchen floor sur­rounded by paramedics. I had been poorly dur­ing the day, I hadn’t felt well, but it was noth­ing ma­jor.

“Is­abella had been sleep­ing with me, and I must have got­ten up and gone down­stairs for a drink. She must have no­ticed I wasn’t there and fol­lowed me down and found me on the floor.”

Clare Cat­ter­mole, the med­i­cal emer­gency dis­patcher who took Is­abella’s call in Au­gust, de­scribed the school­girl as ‘amaz­ing.’ It was the first time she had ever taken a call from a young child, but said she an­swered her ques­tions ‘bet­ter than most adults.’

She said: “You don’t ex­pect to hear a young per­son’s voice on the phone. I’ve had a few child callers be­fore, but a par­ent will al­ways take over the call.

“But when Is­abella told me her mummy wasn’t awake, I knew that wasn’t go­ing to hap­pen this time.

“There are cer­tain ques­tions that we have to ask, and you have to make sure you bring them down to her age so she can fol­low. She en­gaged re­ally well, she was amaz­ing and is a real credit to her mum. She an­swered ev­ery ques­tion, bet­ter than most adults to be hon­est.”

Clare, based at the North West Am­bu­lance Ser­vice’s Liver­pool call cen­tre, ex­plained that some­times when a call comes through it can give you an idea of where the caller is. But this wasn’t the case with Chelsea’s phone, and Clare had no in­for­ma­tion as to where Is­abella was.

Had the lit­tle girl not known her ad­dress – which Chelsea says is down to a fam­ily joke they have with her aun­tie – then it could have taken a long time to trace the call and send help.

Is­abella, who is in re­cep­tion at East Cromp­ton St James Pri­mary School in Shaw, and Chelsea were re­united with Clare at NWAS’ Manch­ester call cen­tre.

They were given a tour be­fore Is­abella was pre­sented with an In­fant Life Saver award for her heroic ac­tions.

Chelsea, who works for GTD (Go­toDoc), says she had never had a con­ver­sa­tion with her daugh­ter about what to do in an emer­gency, but says she loves watch­ing am­bu­lance pro­grammes and be­lieves she must have picked it up from there, or by lis­ten­ing to her talk­ing about her work.

“I’m so proud of her,” she added. “I just don’t think she re­alises how big what she did was.”

●●Is­abella and mum Chelsea, and in­set, with Clare at the call cen­tre

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