HOWLAND, Ohio (WKBN) – Firefighters in Howland are asking people in schools, businesses and other public buildings to check the expiration dates on chest pad cartridges and batteries because there might be issues getting replacements.

In the case of a cardiac event, Automated External Defibrillators (AEDs) can help save someone’s life. The devices are often kept in public buildings for that specific reason.

“It needs to be accessible and ready to work when they need it,” said Lt. Raymond Pace with the Howland Fire Department.

But firefighters say crucial replacement parts on AEDs have been impacted by supply chain issues.

“They have issues not only getting like plastic resin processor chips or microchips that go in the AEDs to actually manufacture the plastic part of it and they have a problem getting the lithium to manufacture the battery,” Pace said.

AED pads and batteries expire after a few years.

Pace is asking people to check their AEDs because right now, depending on the manufacturer, it could take anywhere from four to six months to receive a replacement part.

“We really wouldn’t want a business to go without an AED or a school to go without an AED,” Pace said.

Firefighters suggest that if any of those parts on the AED machine expire within the next year, you order those parts now.

“Just to be safe. That should allow supply chains to get it to you. That should also help with manufacturer shortfalls because of back orders or they’re unable to get the product to manufacture, the product that’s coming to you,” Pace said.