More on Zero Tolerance…!!!

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Jo kindly commented on my last post and provided a report on a serious incident in the South West of the UK.

These incidents seem to be escalating in their numbers and in their violence.

From BBC 24  Monday, 17 September 2007, 17:06 GMT 18:06 UK

999 crew was attacked at incident

Members of an ambulance crew who attended a fatal stabbing in Bristol were abused and attacked by an angry crowd of about 100 people.

Sarah Hodierne and Wayne Evans were the first emergency services on the scene at the Criterion pub on Sunday morning.

When the ambulance arrived Ms Hodierne said she was pulled out by her hair as people shouted and swore.

Ms Hodierne then tried unsuccessfully to resuscitate Mohamoud Muse Hassan, who had been stabbed in the neck.

Vehicle attacked

Ms Hodierne said: “I was just doing my job but I was really frightened.

“The crowd opened the ambulance door and pulled me out by my hair – shouting, swearing and threatening me – there were just so many of them. It was very, very stressful.”

Mr Evans added: “Mr Hassan was in cardiac arrest and even as we got him in the ambulance they were kicking the vehicle and tried to put in the window.”

Chris Hewett, of Great Western Ambulance Service, said: “It was a very difficult and volatile situation. The crowd were jostling them and even pulling Sarah’s hair. Despite this they kept calm and did what they could for the patient.”

Sergeant Lee George, of Avon and Somerset Police, said: “The ambulance crew were surrounded as they tried to administer first aid and many of the bystanders were intimidating them and trying to obstruct them.

“They were very brave to carry on in such extreme circumstances. It was the worst job I have been to in 14 years of police service.”

A 22-year-old man and 16-year-old girl have been arrested following the fatal stabbing.

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And I bet that the Ambulance Crew were not issued with stab proof vests either. With all the safe guards in place that we try to adhere to in making our selves safe, sometimes we will find ourselves in a frightening situation. Even with Police on scene it can still be quite daunting and obviously dangerous.

My sympathies go out to the family and friends of the deceased man. But I also hope that the crew were given support for their actions and received recognition for their bravery.

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And another report from Uphilldowndale

BBC 24  Monday, 18 June 2007, 12:11 GMT 13:11 UK

Ambulance is attacked in call out

An ambulance has been attacked outside a nightclub while paramedics tried to treat a man with a serious head injury.

As the crew tended to the man in the ambulance, in Greater Manchester, a crowd of men who had been beating him broke a window and rocked the van.

The victim, a 20-year-old man, had been punched in the face in the Bamboo nightclub in Hazel Grove, in the early hours of Sunday.

He punched the attacker back and was then set upon by about 15 others.

As the man left the club he was followed by a gang who continued to kick and punch him about the body and face outside on Commercial Road.

Stable condition

He was lying in the road when the ambulance from Buxton, Derbyshire arrived, and paramedics began treating him inside the van when they came under fire from the mob.

The man was taken to Stepping Hill Hospital with a serious head injury, where he remains in a stable condition.

Det Insp Terry Sweeney from Stockport CID said: “This was an extremely violent attack by a group of men who clearly out numbered their victim.

“The fact that these men then continued to try and attack the victim when paramedics were trying to treat him is unacceptable.

“Paramedics are here to save lives and it is unbelievable that people would put them under attack when they are simply trying to do their job.”

Police are appealing for witnesses to the incident, which happened at about 0150 BST.

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These are some of the incidents that get reported. I just hope that it does not become the norm for society to think that this is acceptable.

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11 Responses to More on Zero Tolerance…!!!

  1. Bendygirl says:

    It seems to be a major problem in Liverpool and Manchester with fire engines and ambulances being attacked. It’s awful that you have to put up with such abusive and dangerous situations. Do you have a petition of some kind going to force the govt to issue you with stab vests?
    Thanks for dropping by my site btw, Bendy Girl

  2. Kingmagic says:

    I dont think we have a petition going to to force the government to issue stab vests.

    As with all things in our society today the onus of responsibility has passed from government down to individual health trusts to provide protective equipment.

    My service has said “No” to stab vests stating that they are provocative and that staff do not want them!

    This statement came from a senior manager who was once roadstaff! At the end of the day all managers are concerned about is cost and ORCON!

  3. ‘staff do not want them’ I think the choice would be a reasonable option. There must be certain jobs in certain places that set your nerves on edge.
    I don’t think they look provocative, they just look well, uniform, and if its a surgical gloves and a stethoscope rather than a pair of handcuffs and a baton that the vest is adorned with, the difference should be clear.

  4. Leila says:

    Couldn’t find your email address anywhere, so it comes in a comment! There was an attack on an ambulance crew in Cardiff this week

    http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/wales/7103845.stm

    I though it was just the really big cities that had this problem!

    Unfortunately, these morons rely on the fact that you don’t know it was them, when you’re called to deal with them drunk / drugged / beaten up.

  5. Kingmagic says:

    Thanks Leila

    I know that this does go on all over the country but only by the grace of God and Ambulance “spidey senses” no-one has been killed …yet!

    I think its about time it was highlighted even more. The general public does not really know what we put up with on a daily basis.

    As I keep saying in previous posts/comments…people/scumbags/scroats/chavs etc should be made aware of the consequences of their actions…and the punishment should fit the crime!

  6. Emma says:

    KM have you thought about starting an online petition for stab vests with No 10, I have signed quite a few recently and display one on my blog for improving transport in Iraq, I would happily sign your and also link to it from me if it would help.

    I notice round here they have moved on from bombarding fire engines to attacking ambulances now, like you say does someone really have to lose their life for action to be taken..

    If you don’t want to start the petition yourself I will do it for you..xx

  7. Stonehead says:

    Is there much use of staging areas when you’re sent to an assault or other potentially violet situation? I know in parts of Australia and in the US, fire and ambulance crews won’t go in until police have actually secured the area (as opposed to being present).

    The attitude being that more lives could be lost than the ones already at risk if emergency personnel go in unprotected.

    In unsecured, more fluid situations, the personnel on the ground may make a decision to go in if they believe the risks are worth it/manageable/containable, eg enough police to make retreat possible and plenty of cover/escape routes.

    I suppose that would run head-on into the ORCON targets, though.

  8. Stonehead says:

    Something else I just remembered.

    I met a US paramedic a couple of years ago whose vehicle was ambushed and fired upon. His vehicle and a second had patients who were being taken from the scene of a domestic to hospital.

    The abusive husband got ahead of the ambulances on obvious route to the hospital and shot them up with a shotgun. A couple of paramedics were seriosuly injured in the incident.

    Fortunately, gun crime is still relatively low in the UK, but the potential is still there.

    Look out for yourselves.

  9. Kingmagic says:

    Emma…believe it or not I,m still getting to grips with IT on this blog. I have tried to add sidebar widgets and such like for ages but to no avail.

    I have recently cracked it with posting videos…hence the plethora of vids recently.

    Stonehead…if we are going to a recognised violent incident then we do stand off until the boys and girls in blue arrive.
    But even then the situation can worsen and violence escalate.

    The problem is complicated when not enough info is passed to the control and then on to us. Most Ambo peeps around the country will have a incident to relate about attending a seemingly innocent job only for it to descend into abuse/violence due to the patients mental state.

    So apart from the obvious danger signs…alcohol/drugs/assault/weapons involved/mental incapacity…there are all the other factors…domestic strife/english not first language/cultural barriers/medical probs ie hypos etc.

    We try to minimise the risks at much as possible.

  10. May be we public would be a little more vocal and supportive if we considered (even if it is somewhat selfishly) that an assault on ambulance staff, puts us and our families at risk; as I imagine, NHS budgets being what they are, that there is no such thing as ‘spare’ crews or vehicles to cover when an assault takes personnel/equipment off the road.
    This means less resources for all of us, should we be unfortunate enough to need it.

    KM if you get a grip of how to get photographs in the side bar, could you drop me a maily, with your secret please! :)

  11. Mad hatter says:

    We in GWAS get nothing, we’re getting sick of it

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