I am immensely proud of the way our staff have dealt with the challenges brought on by the flooding

Claire Brown – 20th February 2020 – 6.30pm.

The Trust is maintaining its focus on supporting the multi-agency response to the areas affected by flooding in the West Midlands.

At the peak of the flooding on Tuesday, the Environment Agency had a total of nine Severe Flood Warnings in place (meaning a danger to life), all of which were in the West Midlands area.

West Midlands Ambulance Service Chief Executive, Anthony Marsh, said: “The flooding that we’ve experienced over the last few days in many parts reached record levels.  We’ve been dealing with three major incidents in Shropshire, Worcestershire and Herefordshire.

“My staff have responded magnificently; they are prepared, trained and exercised for such major incidents.  They have really stepped forward to be able to ensure our response is robust, comprehensive and above all safe and sustainable.

“Our Hazardous Area Response Team has deployed and additional flood team to the worst affected areas where they have undertaken a number of evacuations and rescues of people needing to be moved from their homes to a place of safety.

“We increased the number of 4×4 ambulances in our fleet during the winter period.  They have been invaluable during this period and have been deployed and all are fully operational enabling our staff to reach patients they might otherwise struggle to reach as quickly as possible.

“I am immensely proud of everyone who has gone above and beyond to ensure we’ve delivered a collaborative and coordinated response to the areas affected. We’ve also continued to receive support from our volunteers who have been booking on additional hours in their local communities, for which I’m appreciative of too.

“The weather forecast for the coming days is for more rain which will fall onto already sodden ground. Very many staff have already volunteered to come to work to support their colleagues by cancelling rest days or annual leave during this week and into this weekend which I’m immensely grateful for.”

Assistant Chief Ambulance Officer, Michelle Brotherton has been part of the multi-agency senior command team in West Mercia since Sunday.  She said: “We continue to operate a normal 999 service, despite the floods, and have additional ambulance crews on duty in the three counties.  They are supported by additional staff in our control rooms but also the vehicle preparations staff and mechanics who keep our fleet running.

“We will also continue to send ambulance resources into affected communities to ensure we are able to respond to any concerns from local residents over the coming days.

“I would like to thank the many members of the community who have helped us during the last few days.  From farmers who have used their tractors to help us get through flood waters to the offers of food and drink while our staff have been at the scene of incidents. These acts of kindness and community spirit is particularly touching especially when the offers of help have been from people who were either directly affected by flooding or were on the edge of such devastating effects, yet they took time to support our staff.”

Ends

 

Written by officialwmas

West Midlands Ambulance Service (WMAS) covers a geographical area of approximately 5,000 square miles and serves a population of 5.6 million people living in Shropshire, Herefordshire, Worcestershire, Coventry & Warwickshire, Staffordshire and the Birmingham & the Black Country conurbation. The Trust has a total number of 4000 members of staff and uses 864 vehicles.

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