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Private Ambulances ‘May Be Risking Lives‘

Thursday, January 5, 2017

 

Non-NHS vehicles running red lights and breaking speed limits could be against the law, according to union. 

Private ambulances speeding through the streets with drivers who’ve had just one hour of training may well be illegal.

Drivers at the Private Ambulance Service in Basildon, Essex, are allowed to go on emergency call outs after just 60 minutes of training, it is alleged. [1]

NHS paramedics receive at least four weeks training in how to handle and ambulance with blue lights flashing GMB, the union for paramedics, has slammed the ‘terrifying’ prospect of one hour training – and pointed out it may well be illegal.

Sharon Holder, GMB National Officer, said:

"The idea of private ambulance drivers hurtling through our streets with blue lights flashing after just one hour driver training is, frankly, terrifying.

"There is a very good reason why NHS paramedics have a minimum of four weeks of training before being allowed to drive on emergencies - because running red lights and breaking the speed limit can be extremely dangerous and illegal - this is not an NHS ambulance but a private ambulance and therefore treated the same as any other car driver who breaks the law.

"To risk the lives of patients and members of the public by sending out possibly unqualified paramedics - in the name of increased profits - is an appalling thing to do."

ENDS

Contact: Sharon Holder on 07713508725 or at Sharon.holder@gmb.org.uk

[1] http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/health-38398244
 

 

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