Two Hero Inspectors Provide Potentially Life-Saving CPR to a Plant Employee
On April 12, Food Inspectors Jessica Van Havermaet (pictured left) and Tim Soule were performing their online duties in meat processing and slaughter establishment in Long Prairie, Minnesota, when a plant employee collapsed. Both inspectors (who are trained and certified in CPR and first aid) immediately sprang into action, giving CPR until the employee began breathing again. They also stayed with him until the ambulance arrived. The establishment employee’s supervisors told FSIS that Van Havermaet and Soule are the reason that he is alive and well today. Deputy Assistant Administrator for the Office of Field Operations (OFO) Dr. Hany Sidrak said, “These two FSIS inspectors are true heroes for saving a man’s life at a critical moment and acting without hesitation.”
Executive Associate for Regulatory Operations Sherri Johnson, OFO, said that administering life-saving CPR is an incredibly difficult and advanced skill, requiring quick thinking, strength, endurance and attention to detail — all while under extreme pressure. She thanked both lifesaving heroes on behalf of the agency. Johnson went on to say, “Jessica and Tim went above and beyond their duties. This is another great example of our employees demonstrating one of our core values — Accountability. Jessica and Tim hold themselves accountable not only in their food safety duties, but also in ensuring the safety of others in their work environment.”
Jessica Van Havermaet started with FSIS in January of 2021 as an online food inspector after being an establishment employee in a poultry facility. Observing and speaking with FSIS personnel encouraged her to apply for a food inspector position. She has been certified in CPR/first aid as a requirement for her work as an in-home care provider, which she is part-time. Van Havermaet is trained in livestock and poultry for food inspectors.
Tim Soule has been with FSIS 18 years as a food inspector. He previously worked in the industry for 20 years. One influence in his decision to apply to the agency was having worked with FSIS inspectors during pre-op and other tasks. Soule has been trained and certified in CPR and has some medical training. He said that he thought it was a heart attack due to a faint pulse. Soule is beef, pork and poultry trained. He continuously volunteers to train other FSIS personnel at the high speed/high path beef plant, and the agency has been given many compliments on his training abilities and experience. This is the second time he has assisted an establishment employee needing medical attention.