HENRICO COUNTY, Va. (WRIC) — A pilot who suffered a medical emergency at Richmond International Airport (RIC) in Virginia was saved thanks to two Transportation Security Administration (TSA) officers who came to his rescue.
According to the TSA, officers Nigel Allen and Trenard Collier were reportedly in the middle of their duties at the airport when an airline pilot suddenly collapsed from cardiac arrest.
“Trenard saw the pilot on the other side of the atrium and told me, ‘I think that guy is about to pass out,’” Allen said. “I looked over just as the pilot fell to the floor.”
The pilot reportedly approached a railing, staggered, and fell down over his roller bags unconscious. Both officers immediately came to the pilot’s aid and Allen began performing first aid.
Upon the arrival of first responders, Allen continued to assist as they performed CPR. At one point, the pilot’s heart stopped beating and Allen ran to retrieve an automated external defibrillator. According to the TSA, Allen’s swift action “directly led to the pilot’s revival” and ultimately saved his life.
As first responders continued to provide medical attention, Allen and Collier cleared the area.
“As responders continued treatment, Allen retrieved the pilot’s luggage and quickly carried it to the TSA checkpoint,” the TSA report reads. “There, he screened the luggage to ensure the pilot was not a Federal Flight Deck Officer and possibly carrying law enforcement equipment, which would need to be secured.”
The pilot is now reportedly recovering and the family has expressed their thanks to all involved.
“Officer Allen’s actions displayed conspicuous initiative, capability, and above and beyond service to the community he serves,” said TSA Federal Security Director Robin “Chuck” Burke. “His actions clearly contributed to saving the pilot’s life. The RIC Airport Police Department and stakeholders at RIC commended Officer Allen for his quick response in being the first to administer initial first aid.”
Allen has reportedly served the TSA in Richmond for four years and is pursuing a degree in information systems at Virginia Commonwealth University.