Ambulance bosses praise staff and volunteers

BOSSES at the East of England Ambulance Service have thanked staff and volunteers for their “exceptional hard work” after the weekend’s snowy weather conditions led to a soar in calls and collisions.

Director of operations, Alan Murray, said: “It has been an incredibly busy weekend and our staff and volunteers have worked exceptionally hard to make sure patients got the care they needed.

“We have had control room, frontline and support staff making their way into work in treacherous conditions, community first responders going out despite heavy snow and ice and our Rover Rescue 4x4 team have been invaluable in helping us to get to particularly difficult locations.”

Mr Murray praised the public for helping patients and staff in a number of incidents, including good Samaritans in Royston towing an ambulance out of the snow and a man who pulled a patient free from the wreckage of a Letchworth collision before crews arrived.

He also thanked members of the public in Basildon who helped clear roads for an ambulance crew to take a newly delivered baby and her mother to hospital.

Calls to the service rose by more than 20 per cent compared to the same weekend last year, while the number of collisions in the region nearly doubled.

The East of England Ambulance Service NHS Trust (EEAST) took a total of 3,700 calls between 11pm on Saturday (Feb 4), when snow started to hit the region and 9am this morning (Mon, Feb 6).

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As well as praising the hard work of staff and volunteers, Mr Murray reinforced the service’s message for people to take care of themselves and while out driving.

“Road conditions are potentially more dangerous now with black ice replacing snow so please drive carefully and only do so if you need to. We want to keep this weekend’s low number of hospital admissions that way,” he said.