Kyuss Smith steps in to save fellow tradie at construction site

PROUD TO HELP: Apprentice bricklayer Kyuss Smith and his boss, Gary Pollack. Photo: JUDE KEOGH 0424jklife3
PROUD TO HELP: Apprentice bricklayer Kyuss Smith and his boss, Gary Pollack. Photo: JUDE KEOGH 0424jklife3

AN episode of NCIS was all the instruction an apprentice bricklayer had on resuscitation but it was all he needed to save the life of a co-worker.

Second-year apprentice Kyuss Smith was working at a construction site for aged care accommodation in Spring Street on Friday when he spotted a 33-year-old tradesman collapse.

The man had been walking to the smoking area at the time.

“He was fitting and frothing at the mouth and his eyes rolled back in his head,” Kyuss said. “He stopped breathing, it was pretty scary.”

The 17-year-old used what he had seen on the American crime drama to resuscitate the man.

He rolled him over and cleared his tongue from his airway before he started compressions and mouth-to-mouth.

“I didn’t panic, I saw he was down and I flipped him and started pumping,” Kyuss said.

“One of the other kids ran off to get help, but I didn’t worry about anything else.”

When the man started fitting again, Kyuss knew his patient was alive.

“He started coming back and the paramedics came and gave him oxygen,” he said. “I was pretty happy – I’d never taken a class.”

The man was taken to Orange Health Service and the Central Western Daily understands he is now conscious and recovering, although the cause remains unknown.

Kyuss’ supervisor, Gary Pollack, said he did not expect his apprentice to take charge.

“I mean that in the nicest possible way, but he’s proven himself,” he said.

“He acted quickly and decisively at the right time – I don’t know if he would’ve made it if someone hadn’t been there.”

Asked whether he would take a class after Friday’s events, Kyuss joked he was “probably” an expert.

“It’s a life-defining moment for him,” Mr Pollack said.

“He should be confident he can do anything, his self-belief that he acted so quickly.”

The 33-year-old man could not be reached for comment. To enrol, click here.