St John Ambulance

St John Ambulance

January 12, 2015 09:26 ET

David Walliams, David Mitchell, Johnny Vegas, and Sir John Hurt Lend Voices to St John Ambulance Campaign

New animated St John Ambulance advert demonstrates how to save a choking baby

LONDON, UNITED KINGDOM--(Marketwired - Jan. 12, 2015) -

Editors Note: There is a photo associated with this press release.

St John Ambulance has launched a new campaign featuring the voices of David Walliams, David Mitchell, Johnny Vegas, and Sir John Hurt in order to teach people how to save the life of a choking baby.

Celebrities teach first aid

In The Chokeables, the celebrities take on the character of animated objects that could potentially choke babies - a small princess toy, a pen lid, a jelly baby and a peanut. They've joined together because they've had enough and want to show how easy it is to save a choking baby's life.

The film starts with David Mitchell, as a chewed up pen lid, asking for the audience's attention. A jelly baby - Johnny Vegas - then explains that they're fed up of real babies choking on innocent objects like them. He then starts struggling for breath and turns blue.

Walliams' lofty princess character shows the correct technique to save the choking jelly baby - up to five back blows, followed by up to five chest thrusts - as he promptly coughs out a peanut (voiced by Sir John Hurt), before returning to his normal shade.

The advert will be shown on television over the next three months and St John Ambulance is asking people to share the film online widely with their friends and family so that as many people as possible can learn to save a life.

To view the photo accompanying this press release please click on the following link:

Addressing parents' fears

The campaign was developed after new research for the nation's leading first aid charity revealed today that four fifths of parents (79%) wouldn't know how to save their baby from choking to death despite it being a major fear (58%) and 40% having witnessed it.

The research also showed that:

  • 53% of parents said knowing first aid would help them feel better prepared and less scared
  • Of those who said they knew how to save a choking baby, only 29% knew the correct, recommended technique. Nearly three quarters of parents (71%) selected the wrong answer when given multiple choice options
  • 39% of parents think choking is the most important first aid skill to learn as a parent
  • Of the parents who'd witnessed their baby choke, 77% said their baby choked on food, 14% on vomit, and 9% on toys. Other causes included coins, mucus/phlegm, marbles, and pen lids.

St John Ambulance CEO, Sue Killen, said:

'Knowing what to do in an emergency can be the difference between life and death, especially with something like choking. We all know how time pressed parents are so this film makes it as easy as possible to learn first aid - in less than 40 seconds we can all know a skill that could save a life. We hope people watch and share the video with their friends and family so more people have the confidence to act in an emergency.'

In addition to the advert, St John Ambulance has released new resources on its website to inspire everyone to learn life saving first aid skills.

To watch the film visit

Notes to editors

About St John Ambulance

As the nation's leading first aid charity, St John Ambulance believes that nobody should die because they needed first aid and didn't get it. Every year thousands of people die in situations where first aid could have given them a chance to live. St John Ambulance teaches people first aid so that they can be the difference between a life lost and a life saved.

*Research carried out in November 2014 by Opinion Matters on behalf of St John Ambulance. 4,000 parents in England surveyed.

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