More than 700 hours of ambulance service support work provided by Northamptonshire firefighters
Written by Martin Steers on June 24, 2020
Firefighters in Northamptonshire have contributed more than 700 hours of support for the work of East Midlands Ambulance Service during the Covid-19 pandemic.
A total of 12 firefighters from Northamptonshire Fire and Rescue Service began training in certain specialist functions with EMAS two months ago.
Since April, they have carried out over 70 shifts, working alongside Ambulance Urgent Care colleagues, and performing tasks such as driving Urgent Care vehicles and the safe moving and handling of patients.
Northamptonshire is just one of the fire and rescue services asked to take part in this work, with others in the region including Humberside, Lincolnshire, Nottinghamshire, Derbyshire and Leicestershire.
On-call firefighter Ashley Hunt, who works from Wellingborough and Earls Barton Fire Stations, is among those who volunteered to train and work with the ambulance service during the Covid-19 crisis.
He said: “We drive the urgent care vehicles to transport patients to hospital or back home with a qualified urgent care technician. They make the medical decisions and we carry out all necessary driving.
“The knowledge and experience our ambulance colleagues pass on to us is invaluable. We learn from each other’s ways of working, and doing this really has been rewarding.”
Michael Jones, General Manager for Northamptonshire at East Midlands Ambulance Service, said: “We are incredibly grateful for the support of our colleagues from Northamptonshire Fire and Rescue Service during these unprecedented times, helping to support our staff and patients who need us the most.
“We already work very closely with NFRS through our Emergency Services Volunteers and so this extra support has built on the great relationship we have with the fire service.
“A big thank you to all who have stepped forward to help.”