Last weekend busiest weekend yet for ambulance service in Harlow

Lifestyle / Tue 22nd Jul 2014 at 12:44pm

WHILE many people were out and about enjoying the sun over the weekend, ambulance staff and volunteers were working hard as they experienced their busiest weekend so far in 2014.

The East of England Ambulance Service NHS Trust (EEAST) received 6,424 emergency 999 calls on Saturday and Sunday. The service took 300 more calls that its previous busiest weekend.

Nicholas Jones, manager for one of EEAST’s control rooms, said: “This weekend was our busiest yet. We saw a particularly large volume of calls on Saturday, taking more than 700 calls extra compared to the average day.

“It’s important to remember that 999 is for life-threatening emergencies such as strokes, chest pain, breathing difficulties and serious bleeding. Other options are available, even at the weekends, such as your out-of-hours GP and the pharmacist, and of course you can always ring 111 for health advice at any time of day or night.”

The high number of calls coincided with soaring temperatures across the country, and EEAST has previously issued health advice to help people cope with the hot weather.

“We do tend to experience peaks in calls due to extreme weather such as the heat we saw at the weekend, and we’d ask people to take a moment to familiarise themselves with our safety advice, in order to keep their families safe this summer,” added Nicholas.

The ambulance service was keen to praise the efforts of its staff, with Chief Executive Dr Anthony Marsh saying: “I’m incredibly proud of how hard our staff work day in day out, and particularly on busy days such as this weekend. I’d like to say a huge thank you to everyone for their efforts over the weekend: from our call handlers, to our dispatchers, to all of the crews working on the road, and of course our volunteers.”

To find out more about EEAST’s summer safety advice, visit www.eastamb.nhs.uk or use #999summer on Twitter.


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