County has five ‘no-gos’ for medics
FIVE locations in Surrey have been flagged as potentially too dangerous for paramedics and ambulance staff to attend.
South East Coast Ambulance Service (SECAmb) said as of August this year, there were five such addresses posing a risk of violence to responders.
This is up from four in November 2015 according to information issued by SECAmb via Freedom of Information legislation.
The ambulance service says ‘red markers’ relate to the highest risk category flagged on its computer assisted dispatch system.
Red locations are defined as addresses where available information suggests staff have previously been physically assaulted or threatened with violence.
A further 10 addresses have been marked as ‘amber’, although this was down from 15 in November 2015.
An amber marker flags those addresses where available information suggests there is a potential risk to crews of abusive, aggressive or inappropriate behaviour.
A SECAmb spokesman said: “We have a duty to protect our staff which is why we have a system which flags potentially dangerous addresses.
“We will not tolerate any violence or threat of violence against our staff and will, where possible, look to prosecute the small minority of people who act in this way.”
Nationally, figures released by ambulance services in July 2017 reveal there are around 5,000 addresses across the UK flagged as either having a risk of violence, needing police assistance or being places where residents may be abusive. This is up from around 4,800 at the end of 2015. Figures were not available for East Midlands or West Midlands Ambulance services.
Labour is proposing a new Crime (Assaults on Emergency Staff) Bill to make attacks on emergency service personnel such as police officers, firefighters and paramedics and other responders an aggravated offence.
This would mean that it would be likely that the maximum punishment available to judges in these cases would increase considerably.