Search

Increase in calls to fire service to move obese people

PUBLISHED: 10:30 09 June 2018 | UPDATED: 12:09 09 June 2018

File stock photo of the waist of an obese woman Picture: Clara Molden/PA Wire

File stock photo of the waist of an obese woman Picture: Clara Molden/PA Wire

Archant

The number of calls made to the fire service to move obese people has increased in the past five years.

Figures from the Home Office show that the Norfolk Fire and Rescue Service attended 45 callouts for bariatric assistance  Photo: Denise BradleyFigures from the Home Office show that the Norfolk Fire and Rescue Service attended 45 callouts for bariatric assistance Photo: Denise Bradley

Figures from the Home Office show 45 calls were made to Norfolk Fire and Rescue Service for bariatric assistance - helping ambulance crews to move obese people - between April 2012 and March 2017.

In 2016/17 there were 11 calls made to the fire service, compared to five in 2015/16. The highest number of calls were made in the period between 2013/14 - 18 compared to nine in the previous year.

These calls represent a small portion of the service’s 13,000 non-fire incidents in Norfolk, but the majority of call-outs took more than an hour to resolve. Of those, five incidents were more than four hours long.

On Valentine’s Day in 2013, up to six fire engines and 10 to 19 firefighters attended a call which took nearly two hours to deal with.

Across England, fire and rescue services attended 851 bariatric assistance cases in 2016-17, a 98pc increase on five years previously.

Firefighters often need lifting equipment and special slings to transport people, and sometimes remove windows, walls and bannisters.

An East of England Ambulance Service spokesman said: “We treat a variety of patient conditions across the region, and come into contact with many people who are managing long-term and complex heath needs, including those needing bariatric care.

“If someone requires emergency treatment, we aim to provide the best possible pre-hospital care and we have a duty to ensure we have the resources required to help all of our patients.

“A lot of time is dedicated in our service to how we can improve patient experience for groups of people with all kinds of accessibility needs, allowing us to be as responsive and patient-driven as we can be.”

A spokesman from the Norfolk Fire and Rescue service said bariatric assistance can be either pre-planned or critical assistance, adding: “We do have specialist appliances at our Dereham station, which are engineered with bariatric support in mind.”

In Suffolk, 69 calls were made to the fire service in the last five years, with one call out in April 2015 attended by up to nine fire engines and 20 to 29 firefighters who had spent three to four hours at the scene.

A spokesman from the Suffolk Fire and Rescue Service said these calls represented less than 0.01pc of the 27,000 calls they had attended.

They added: “We continue to work closely with our colleagues in the ambulance service to provide the best possible service for Suffolk residents, and helping out vulnerable patients, including those who are bariatric, is an important part of that partnership working.”

Other News

Yesterday, 17:35

Norfolk’s police chief has said he will make a case for more police officers on the street, but it would mean a rise in council tax.

Yesterday, 16:26

A “dangerous” arsonist, who risked lives by setting fire to his home in Great Yarmouth, was jailed before for starting two fires at a previous address, a court heard.

Yesterday, 16:01

Parents at a Norfolk academy have described their anger after finding out that if their children had missed a day at school they would not be able to take part in a non-uniform day.

Yesterday, 14:40

Motorists are being advised that they could face delays this weekend as police prepare to transport an abnormal load.

Most Read

Yesterday, 16:01

Parents at a Norfolk academy have described their anger after finding out that if their children had missed a day at school they would not be able to take part in a non-uniform day.

Read more
Yesterday, 10:12

Ambulances have been head butted, kicked, and had blue lights ripped off in shocking acts of vandalism on the emergency vehicles - sometimes while crews have been trying to treat patients.

Read more
NHS
Thu, 09:34

A 46-year-old shop assistant was racially abused by a customer in Great Yarmouth.

Read more

Plans for a former pub to be turned into a luxury tobacconist have been put under fire by a nearby health centre, with bosses arguing it would “give out entirely the wrong message”.

Read more
NHS
Mon, 18:00

School trips usually involve taking children to see one of Shakespeare’s great plays or visiting a historic museum.

Read more

Local Weather

Partly Cloudy

Partly Cloudy

max temp: 4°C

min temp: 3°C

Hot Jobs

Show Job Lists

Digital Edition

cover

Enjoy the Great
Yarmouth Mercury

e-edition today

Subscribe

Newsletter Sign Up

Great Yarmouth Mercury weekly newsletter
Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Our Privacy Policy