MORE community-accessible defibrillators than ever before are now available across the region.

And an initiative set-up in tribute to tragic Keighley Cougars star Danny Jones has been a major factor behind the surge.

In the past year, an additional 389 of the lifesaving devices installed in public places have been registered with Yorkshire Ambulance Service (YAS) – taking the total above 880.

YAS is working with a range of community organisations and charities – including the Danny Jones Defibrillator Fund – to encourage increased provision of the machines, to be accessed around-the-clock by members of the public for use on patients who have suffered a cardiac arrest.

Mr Jones collapsed and died from an undiagnosed heart condition while playing against London Skolars in May, 2015. He was 29.

His widow, Lizzie, established the defibrillator fund in his name and it has provided financial assistance to countless community clubs and junior teams across the region and nationally to buy the devices.

Paul Stevens, head of community resilience at YAS, said he was "thrilled" at the huge increase in community defibrillators – known as cPADs.

He said their use, coupled with early administration of cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR), greatly improved a patient's chances of survival.

"This is a massive achievement because every second counts when a cardiac arrest occurs," he added.

"The more defibrillators we have in our communities and the more people trained in CPR, the better."

In addition to the 883 cPADS across Yorkshire – which can be accessed 24/7 by getting a security code from a 999 ambulance operator – there are also 2,447 defibrillators at locations including GP practices, railway stations, supermarkets, offices, shopping centres and police stations which can be used by the public when the facilities are open.

Anyone considering buying a defibrillator for community use, or who has not registered an existing one, should contact YAS community defibrillation officer Dave Jones on