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Trooper uses AED to save man accused of overdosing and driving

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) – A Greenwood man is accused of overdosing while driving and then crashing on the side of I-70 in Indianapolis.

It happened Thursday afternoon and the man may have survived thanks to some quick-thinking state troopers and a recent push to get automatic external defibrillators in patrol cars.

Indiana State Police say they found 46-year-old Randy Vermillion unconscious in the driver seat of his truck.

“His foot was still on the gas, vehicle was still in drive,” said Trooper Walter Butt. He said the man’s face was blue and he wasn’t breathing well.

Trooper Butt and two other state troopers who arrived on scene jumped into action and pulled Vermillion from his car.

“Even once we removed him from the vehicle and cleared his airway his breathing was very, very shallow,” said Trooper Butt.

The trooper then pulled out one of the AEDs (automatic external defibrillators) state police received through the Bolt for the Heart Initiative

The AED walked the troopers through what type of care the man needed.

“It advised that no shock was necessary because he still had a heartbeat, but it did advise that he needed chest compressions and rescue breathing,” said Trooper Butt.

Troopers did chest compressions and rescue breathing until paramedics arrived. The paramedics then administered Narcan and Vermillion began breathing on his own again.

The trooper said he realized the man was overdosing, but didn’t have Narcan. So he used his training and the AED until medics arrived.

Randy Vermillion was taken to the hospital and released.

He faces preliminary charges of possession of narcotics, drug paraphernalia and operating while intoxicated.

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