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WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) — An emergency at Wilmington International Airport today, but this had nothing to do with a plane.

An employee at Hertz thought she was having a heart attack. Another employee knew there was a defibrillator located past the security checkpoint, but when they got there, they found out they couldn’t bypass security.

“There are so many, how should I say, gimmicks, to try and get through security if someone was planning something. The rules and regulations, you can’t allow anyone, even me as the Airport Director,” said Jon Rosborough, “I mean, I don’t have any exceptions, they have to go through that.”

Instead, a TSA employee ran to get it.

The second defibrillator is located in the airport’s Public Safety Office, which is in a separate building near the runway. It’s about a half mile drive from the main airport. Responders say it really took them no time to get here to help.

“I was over there, my firefighter was over there and we made an immediate response over here and were here in probably less than two minutes,” said Gary Taylor, the Public Safety Office Operations Manager.

By the time the TSA employee returned with the debrillator, Taylor was already treating the woman.

Rosborough says the debrillator is kept past security near the gate because planes may have to be diverted to our airport because of medical emergencies.

Employees at Hertz could not comment, but they did tell us the woman is doing well at New Hanover Regional Medical Center.

Comment on this Story

  • Grace deValinger

    … the ILM airport has enough money to have more than one defibrillator. Quit being so cheap, ILM, buy another couple and save a life!!!!

  • Ken

    It appears there was a very good response time to this emergency, however, this also makes the case for a second defibrillator to be located outside of the security zone. In an effort to be more proactive than reactive, I hope the Air Port Authority will give consideration to securing a third defibrillator and placing it outside of the security zone. I do understand the need to have one inside the zone as it would not have to be held up by an inspection in the event it was needed inside the security zone with the unit being located outside of it.

  • SurfCityTom

    come to that conclusion, they soon shall. Rest assured, there have no doubt been, or will be, communications between the affected individual or her family and a blood sucker. On top of that Hertz is large enough to realize it should have one available and accessible. If they don’t put one at the rental station, look for one to be donated perhaps

  • AED should must be on the place government are put the defibrillator because it comes to help any people in emergency. It’s totally staff mistake that it is not on its place. AED is helpful to restore a heart to normal state. It is an electronic tool, which automatically diagnoses the heartbeat and determines if a shock is required.


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