A groundbreaking move has been made by the Tilbury Border Force team to improve the survival of anyone who suffers a cardiac arrest.

New defibrillators have been installed at the site in Tilbury, where Stephen Furnell, resuscitation and medical consultant for Border Force said survival rates fall from between seven and ten per cent each minute a defibrillator is not used.

Mr Furnell, has been campaigning for more than 20 years for the devices at public sites and workplaces.

He said: “Every second counts when someone collapses and stops breathing.

"These devices are simple to use by anyone with little or no training.

"The sooner it is used in a collapse, the better the chances of a positive outcome."

Neil Dangerfield, Border Force senior officer, added: “Our decision to install defibrillators in Border Force workplaces, including some smaller ports and offices, was taken with our wider workforce in mind but many of these areas are also spaces that the public and other workers pass through.

“Expert advice tells us that defibrillators mean survival rates from sudden cardiac arrests can be dramatically improved and lives saved.

"We have taken a very proactive step in putting defibrillators into more of our buildings and I am pleased that Border Force has led the way to protect as many people as possible.”

Paul Watts, head of international business at UK medical suppliers SP Services, said it was an innovative move by Border Force which recognised the lifesaving opportunities of defibrillators.

He said: “Many offices with large numbers of employees do not have a single defibrillator in their buildings.

"To have one in every building with a minimum of 20 staff is a very proactive and positive step.”