• Text size      
  • Send this article to a friend
  • Print this article

Risky addresses flagged up to paramedics

A "SHOCKING" 1323 addresses are classed as risky for ambulances to attend because of violent incidents or threatening behaviour, according to new figures.

Labour's health ­spokesman Neil Findlay said these locations had all been flagged by the Scottish Ambulance Service as being "risky for ambulance crews to attend".

A spokesman for the service said for calls to these addresses, ambulance dispatch staff can request the police attend.

Mr Findlay is calling on the ambulance service to ensure there are plans to deal with the problem, by, for example, having education campaigns to remind people of the vital role ambulance crews and other emergency services play.

The MSP made the call after information released to Labour using Freedom of Information legislation revealed the number of addresses involved .

The largest number of addresses was in the Greater Glasgow and Clyde Health Board area, where 345 locations had been flagged, with a further 313 identified in the NHS Lothian area and 150 in the NHS Lanarkshire region.

Mr Findlay said: "It's quite shocking so many addresses across Scotland have been identified as being risky for ambulance crews to attend. Public service workers are in need of our thanks, not aggression."

A spokesman for Scottish Ambulances said: "The safety of staff is paramount, which is why the service takes appropriate measures to protect them. If any ambulance crew feels their safety may be compromised, they are instructed to hold nearby the scene and await support from the police, or additional ambulance crews.

"As a further measure, addresses where there have been incidents of violence or threatening behaviour are flagged in control rooms. This means if a 999 call comes in from a flagged address, dispatch staff can request additional police support.

"Every year, ambulance crews report incidents of assault, ranging from pushing and punching to spitting and attack with a variety of weapons. In most incidents alcohol is a key factor in the aggressive behaviour."

Contextual targeting label: 
Block list

Commenting & Moderation

We moderate all comments on HeraldScotland on either a pre-moderated or post-moderated basis.
If you're a relatively new user then your comments will be reviewed before publication and if we know you well and trust you then your comments will be subject to moderation only if other users or the moderators believe you've broken the rules

Moderation is undertaken full-time 9am-6pm on weekdays, and on a part-time basis outwith those hours. Please be patient if your posts are not approved instantly.

203754