Community Defibrillators

The Red Sky Foundation provides life-saving defibrillators for city centres, local communities, schools and also NHS Hospitals.
As part of our corporate partnership programme, we encourage businesses to adopt a Red Sky AED defibrillator.  Working closely with local authorities, the emergency services and the North East Ambulance Service we to try and ensure the safety of everyone.

Find your local cPAD

Community Public Access Defibrillators (cPADs)

A cPAD is a defibrillator that is available to members of the public, 24 hours a day, to use in the case of a life threatening emergency.   In the north east, we know that only 8.7% of patients who had resuscitation attempted on them survived to be discharged from hospital. A victim’s chance of survival falls by around 7 to 10 percent with every minute that defibrillation is delayed. When a heart stops beating, oxygen is not being transported to the brain and other vital organs, and within four to five minutes, brain damage will start to occur without intervention.

Many organisations have defibrillators, which are machines that can be used to attempt to correct someone’s heart rhythm if they are in cardiac arrest, which is vital in the first few minutes to increase the chance of survival.

However, many of these are not available to the public to use or not available 24 hours per day which can mean that a vital life-saving piece of equipment is unavailable for over fifty per cent of the time. With cPAD sites, the machine is available to members of the public 24 hours a day, either because it is in a building that is permanently open, such as a hotel, or it has been placed in a special cabinet on the outside of a building.   These machines have been registered with the ambulance service, so that in a life threatening emergency, the caller can be told where the nearest defibrillator is and asked if someone can retrieve it.   If the cabinet is locked, then the caller would be given the access code.

Knowing how to help save lives

In towns and villages across the region, defibrillators have been installed to help save lives.  But would you know how to use one in an emergency? Why not take a look at these questions and answers to see how saving a life can be easier than you think.


Our FAQs will help you to find answers to your questions about defibrillators and accessories, quickly and easily.

What is a defibrillator?

A defibrillator is a device that can be used to shock the heart back into a normal rhythm during cardiac arrest. Those available to the public work automatically and provide instructions and will not deliver a shock unless one is necessary.  

Why is a defibrillator important? 

30,000 out-of-hospital cardiac arrests happen each year in the UK, and 9 out of 10 are fatal. Investing in a defibrillator from the Red Sky Foundation could be the difference between life and death and will help us keep hearts beating for longer. 

How do I know if I need one? 

Having a defibrillator on your premises whether it be at school, work or in the local community is a relatively small investment that could one day save someone’s life. The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) recommend that certain businesses have defibrillators, whilst others should perform a needs assessment to identify if they should have one. This assessment includes: 

  • consideration of how many people may be in, near, or passing through your workplace (as the likelihood of cardiac arrest increases with more people) 
  • the age of those people (as age is a risk factor for heart disease) 
  • the nature of the location (as remoteness may affect emergency service response times and the availability of alternatives). 

Some businesses choose to have defibrillators on their premises regardless of a needs assessment, because they want to demonstrate their commitment to keeping their colleagues, customers and local community safe. As well as the Red Sky Foundation, the Resuscitation Council UK also recommend that they are available. 

What type of defibrillator do I need? 

Defibrillators vary with some providing more protection from the elements than others (making them more suitable for harsher environments), some containing additional features such as LCD display screens and some providing real time CPR feedback. The cost of each defibrillator also varies depending on their features. Deciding on the best defibrillator for you really depends on your environment and the budget you have. Get in touch with us using the contact us details below and we can help guide you on which defibrillator will be most suitable for you.  

What’s the difference between a PAD and an AED? 

AED stands for Automated External Defibrillator – this automatically analyses the heart rhythm and provides a shock during a cardiac arrest where required. 

PAD stands for Public Access Defibrillator – a defibrillator that is accessible to the public, we generally recommend in a locked cabinet. 

What’s the difference between an automatic and a semi-automatic defibrillator? 

Semi-automatic defibrillators will ask the rescuer to press a button to deliver a shock if needed and when prompted. Fully automatic defibrillators, on the other hand, automate this process and will deliver the shock automatically if needed. And it will tell the rescuer a shock is about to be delivered so that they can make sure they aren’t touching the casualty. 

How many do I need? 

Just having one defibrillator could be the difference between life and death. But if you are an organisation with multiple sites, or based in an office with several floors, our team can advise you on the right number to maximise your chances of saving a life but at a budget you can afford. 

Does my defibrillator need maintaining? 

Defibrillators are designed to be low maintenance. We recommend that someone check the defibrillator once a week to ensure it hasn’t been used and is in good working condition with sufficient pad and battery life, but they don’t require any ongoing maintenance. If you are budgeting ahead then it’s worth knowing that the pads and battery will need to be replaced every five years and this will cost approximately £250. And pads will need to be replaced if they are used to treat a cardiac arrest. 

How long do they last? 

Defibrillator batteries and pads have a standby life and a maximum number of shocks, this varies between each model. For example, most defibrillators come with a battery and pads with a standby life of 5 years. Please note that pads will also need to be replaced if used to treat a cardiac arrest. Defibrillators and their batteries are also covered by warranties, which again will vary between devices from 4 – 10 years. 

What accessories do I need? 

Defibrillators from Red Sky Foundation come with all the necessary components you need to be able to treat a sudden cardiac arrest straight away, but you can get additional items such as a cabinet, brackets and signage from us too. 

If you are budgeting ahead then it’s worth knowing that the pads and battery will need to be replaced every five years and this will cost approximately £250. And pads will need to be replaced if they are deployed to treat a cardiac arrest. 

Do I need a CPR kit? 

We can provide FREE CPR familiarity sessions with every defibrillator which consists of demonstrating CPR in under an hour in a larger group. 

Do I need to register it? 

Registering your defibrillator means it will be connected to a network of defibrillators and is linked to ambulance services across the country. Having your defibrillator registered means it will be more accessible and can help save more lives. 

Do I need training to use one? 

No, as defibrillators give clear, verbal instructions on how to use the device. There are images on the packets for the chest pads that show you where to place them, which doesn’t have to be exact, and sometimes also on the device itself. Being untrained in using a defibrillator shouldn’t be a barrier to using one. Lives have been saved by untrained people giving defibrillator shocks to people in cardiac arrest. 

We can provide a free CPR familiarisation session with every defibrillator. Defibrillators are designed to be easy to use and so don’t require any additional training and we have videos that show the defibrillator in use that can also be viewed by potential responders to help them become familiar with using a defibrillator. 

How do I get a defibrillator?

You can get a defibrillator and any of the accessories directly from Red Sky Foundation. If you are a business and would like to one, please get in touch with us using the details below and we can arrange this for you. Alternatively, you may also be eligible for a part-funded defibrillator if you can demonstrate your area needs one. You can check if you are eligible by contacting the team at

Our premises now has a new layout and a one-way system for staff. Should we move our AED? 

Conduct an assessment to consider the best location, making sure the AED(s) are still as accessible as possible and not obstructed by barriers and screens. If you do move your AED, make sure staff know the new location. 

Lots of our staff now work from home. What does this mean? 

You could consider funding an AED for sections of employees’ local community. But also make sure that, if you have fewer staff on site, those that are there know where the AED is, and as many of your staff who are on site know how to use it and how to do CPR. You can also do a demonstration in how to use an AED on Zoom, so staff feel confident when they return and you can complete socially distanced training. 

Why should I get one from the Red Sky Foundation? 

We’re a charitable organisation you can trust, working in partnership with the NHS and local ambulance services, informed by world class medical expertise and research.  You’ll get expert guidance, the right package and a free CPR familiarity session. Your investment in a defibrillator will help save and improve lives and contribute to raising vital funds to help support and continue our healthy heart campaigns. 

Contact us 

To get in touch with any other queries you may have or to enquire about a defibrillator please call 0191 337 1774, 9 am to 5 pm, Monday to Friday or please email and we’ll reply between 9 am to 5 pm, Monday to Friday.