Good Samaritan – Applying First aid – The Daily Telegraph, 03/06/210

WHEN Joe Tomarchio woke up yesterday morning he had no idea that in the space of a few hours he would become a modern day hero.

The Westpac banker was on his way to work when Molly Robinson tripped over an uneven road cover in the middle of a city intersection.

Mrs Robinson, 70, slammed her head hard.

The accident happened during peak-hour traffic about 8.30am. People were rushing to work.

But as the lights turned green on the corner of Castlereagh and Market Sts, Mr Tomarchio’s good Samaritan instincts kicked in.

“It was automatic. I knew somebody had to take control of the situation,” Mr Tomarchio said.

“I grabbed her hand and told her everything was going to be OK.”

As Mrs Robinson lay in the middle of the intersection, Mr Tomarchio yelled to two nearby stop-go workers to direct traffic.

He called an ambulance and pulled out Mrs Robinson’s mobile phone to call her daughter Kelly Robinson-Hicks, who was travelling on a bus a few streets away.

While this was going on, dozens of office workers walked by without stopping to help.

Mr Tomarchio said he was surprised others had not helped Mrs Robinson, who suffered a head injury and bruising to her leg.

“I thought more people would stop to help,” he said.

Mrs Robinson called Mr Tomarchio last night to thank him and offered to send him a card, but he said it wasn’t necessary.

Human behaviour expert Stephen Juan said good Samaritan syndrome had begun to erode in Australian cities.

Dr Juan said city dwellers “did not want to get their hands dirty”.

“People in Sydney don’t make good Samaritans because we all have our own lives and we don’t want to stop for other people in an anonymous society,” Dr Juan said.

“People are concerned about helping because they could be blamed if something goes wrong.”

Kelly Robinson-Hicks described Mr Tomarchio as a “star” after discharging her mum from St Vincent’s Hospital.

“When I saw Mum in the middle of the road I thought she was dead, it was such a terrifying experience,” Ms Robinson-Hicks said. “Joe was the star. The way he stayed so calm and just held her hand, I can’t thank him enough.”