One-year-old saved from drowning by passer-by
A ONE-year-old boy is alive for Easter thanks to the quick thinking of a passer-by at a Palmerston lake, who found him lifeless and floating face down.
Melissa Lay was walking with her husband on Friday afternoon when she noticed something in the lake that looked unusual.
"I saw something in the water and went over to see what it was," she said yesterday. "It looked unusual. Then I saw it was a child.
"My instinct was to just go in and grab him and pull him out and start resuscitation."
Ms Lay's husband dialled 000 and after a few moments of performing CPR, the child began breathing again.
Ms Lay, who shied away from the attention of being a hero yesterday, said she had children of her own and was just doing what any parent would in that situation.
"He was there and he needed help," she said.
The boy was at Sanctuary Lakes Park playground with his parents when the incident unfolded around 2pm on Good Friday. It was unclear how his parents lost sight of him.
NT Police said the child was taken to Royal Darwin Hospital after paramedics arrived at the scene.
"Resuscitation efforts had been successful when police arrived, and the child was breathing and in a recovery position thanks to the (CPR)," said a police spokeswoman.
It's understood the child was vomiting and showing signs of hypoxia - a deficiency of oxygen reaching the tissues - after being revived. But he was also crying, which paramedics took as a good sign.
He spent the night at RDH and was released yesterday.
Ms Lay, who was shaken by the ordeal, said it was all a blur.
She credited her numerous first-aid courses for her actions and said everyone should take the training in case they find themselves in a similar situation.
"I had taken some first-aid courses so knew what to do," she said. "Everyone should have that training."
St John Ambulance spokesman Craig Garraway said positive outcomes in traumatic situations like that were not always possible.
"I can't emphasise enough how important it is to have first-aid training," he said. "In some cases those positive outcomes can only be achieved before we are able to get there.
"In this case, she was able to save him. This is a good news story - and we don't get a lot of those sometimes."
NT Police said Ms Lay was to be commended for her swift actions in saving the child's life. They reminded parents to always watch their children carefully around bodies of water.
"Luckily this ended happily but it could have just as easily ended in tragedy," a spokesman said.