Am­bu­lance dan­ger ar­eas

Paramedics may call for po­lice back up if head­ing to ad­dresses flagged up in sys­tem

Rutherglen Reformer - - Front Page - Mur­ray Spooner

Dozens of Ruther­glen and Cam­bus­lang streets have been flagged as a po­ten­tial risk for paramedics.

A spe­cial Re­former in­ves­ti­ga­tion can this week re­veal the fig­ures.

More than 35 ad­dresses in Ruther­glen and Cam­bus­lang have been flagged as no-go ar­eas for paramedics ac­cord­ing to lat­est statis­tics.

Fig­ures re­vealed un­der a Free­dom of In­for­ma­tion re­quest sub­mit­ted by the Re­former show that 37 ad­dresses have been high­lighted as hav­ing a po­ten­tial risk of vi­o­lence, with po­lice at­ten­dance pos­si­bly needed.

Ac­cord­ing to fig­ures re­vealed this week, there are 306 ar­eas in La­nark­shire and 875 lo­ca­tions be­lieved to be of risk to paramedics in Greater Glas­gow and Clyde.

There are seven post­codes south and seven north of Cam­bus­lang Main Street, while 23 ad­dresses in Ruther­glen pose a threat to mem­bers of the Scot­tish Am­bu­lance Ser­vice.

In To­ry­glen seven ad­dresses and in Castlemilk, 17, were con­sid­ered a po­ten­tial risk.

The Re­former can also re­veal that there was only one area in Croft­foot that may see paramedics given po­lice back up when at­tend­ing.

How­ever, fig­ures high­lighted there were 35 ad­dresses in East Kil­bride that were flagged as nogo ar­eas and 36 were con­sid­ered the same in Hamil­ton.

The ser­vice said ad­dresses with a pre­vi­ous his­tory of vi­o­lence or threat­en­ing be­hav­iour to­wards staff are flagged as a pro­tec­tive mea­sure so that when a call from that ad­dress comes in dis­patch­ers can re­quest po­lice as­sis­tance.

It added that am­bu­lance crews are trained to man­age ag­gres­sion and to do a risk as­sess­ment when they ar­rive at the scene. If they have con­cerns they are in­structed to await the ar­rival of po­lice or ad­di­tional am­bu­lance crews.

A spokesman for the Scot­tish Am­bu­lance Ser­vice said: “The safety of am­bu­lance staff is para­mount, which is why the ser­vice takes ap­pro­pri­ate mea­sures to pro­tect them.

“They should not have to fear for their own safety when treat­ing pa­tients.

“As one of a num­ber of pro­tec­tive mea­sures, in­di­vid­ual ad­dresses where there have been pre­vi­ous in­ci­dents of vi­o­lence or threat­en­ing be­hav­iour to­wards staff are flagged in con­trol rooms.

“This means that if a 999 call comes in from a flagged ad­dress dis­patch­ers can iden­tify that staff may be at risk and re­quest ad­di­tional sup­port, if re­quired.

“Am­bu­lance crews are given train­ing in man­age­ment of ag­gres­sion and how to un­der­take a full risk as­sess­ment on ar­rival at scene to es­tab­lish if there is any po­ten­tial dan­ger. If any crews feel that their safety may be com­pro­mised they are in­structed to hold nearby the scene and await sup­port from the po­lice or ad­di­tional am­bu­lance crews.”

In­spec­tor Jim Gille­spie of Ruther­glen Po­lice Of­fice told the Re­former that Po­lice Scot­land did not get many calls to as­sist paramedics in Ruther­glen or Cam­bus­lang.

He con­firmed that it was a rare oc­cur­rence for po­lice to at­tend such in­ci­dents in the towns.

If any crew feel their safety may be com­pro­mised they hold and await sup­port

In dan­ger More than 35 ad­dresses in Ruther­glen and Cam­bus­lang have been flagged as no-go ar­eas for paramedics

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