‘Water’ way to transport a patient


Friday 21st October 2016 – 3.20pm – Jamie Arrowsmith.

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The belief that ambulance staff never encounter two days the same was proved beyond doubt yesterday (Thursday) when a patient and the crew treating him took to a narrowboat in order to get him back to the ambulance.

West Midlands Ambulance Service had been called to the Staffordshire and Worcester Canal near Boggs Lock in Gailey at 2.07pm to reports of a patient on a narrowboat with a leg injury. One ambulance was sent to the scene.

A West Midlands Ambulance Service spokesman said: “The crew parked as close as possible to the patient but still faced a walk of about a mile down the towpath, carrying their equipment with them.

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“Once with the patient, a man thought to be in his 60s, they assessed him and treated him for a leg injury, on which he was unable to apply weight.

“Faced with a dilemma of how to get the patient back to the ambulance in order to transport him to County Hospital, Stafford, the crew were offered a cruise back up the canal by Richard Gray of Birmingham and Midland Marine Services who was working nearby.

“Ambulance staff carefully assisted the man on to the awaiting boat before cruising up the canal back towards where the ambulance was parked.

“He was then moved on to a stretcher and carried the final part of the journey on to the back of the ambulance before being taken to hospital.

“This was certainly one of the more unusual jobs for our staff to come across and thanks go to Richard for his assistance in helping the patient on to the back of the ambulance as quickly as possible.”



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