Sunshine sparks busiest day of the year for ambulance service in Warwickshire

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Whilst the region basked in the summer sun on Saturday, ambulance crews dealt with more 999 calls than on New Year’s Eve.

West Midlands Ambulance Service received 3,211 999 calls yesterday compared to 2,815 999 calls on New Years’ Eve in 2012, which is traditionally the busiest day of the year.

In Coventry and Warwickshire 462 emergency calls were received on Saturday.

Diane Lee, WMAS Assistant Chief Ambulance Officer, said: “Historically, when the weather is good, there is greater demand on both the ambulance service and the NHS as a whole. Saturday was no exception and saw ambulance crews and control room staff work flat out to deal with 14 per cent more 999 calls than on New Year’s Eve, traditionally the busiest day of the year.

“Temperatures are expected to remain high and we are appealing to members of the public to stay safe in the sun by following a few simple steps to avoid the need to dial 999:

· If you’re out in the sun make sure you apply plenty of sun cream, wear a hat and light, loose fitting cotton clothes. Avoid being out between 11am and 3pm, which is the hottest part of the day.

· Drink plenty of fluids, such as water, to keep yourself hydrated. Remember, caffeine and alcohol can have the opposite effect and can actually dehydrate you.

· If a barbecue is on the cards, please ensure that it is lit safely and in the correct manner. Avoid burn injuries by using the correct utensils and don’t let children play too closely to the hot barbecue. Lastly, please make sure that all food is cooked through properly to avoid any food poisoning incidents.

· Fancy a swim? Then please do so in a supervised swimming pool. No matter how tempting it is to cool off in rivers and lakes. The Trust sadly dealt with a fatal drowning in a quarry in Herefordshire yesterday.

· If you’re taking advantage of the sunshine and are going out for a walk or hike in the countryside, please make sure you wear the appropriate footwear to avoid any slips or trips.

· If you’re planning on hitting the road for a trip away, make sure you’re prepared for your journey, take food and drinks and remember to break the journey up. If driving in residential areas, please watch out for ice cream vans and any children that may be distracted around them.

· We would also ask bikers to be careful and wear appropriate safety clothing. Equally we ask car drivers to look out for bikers, as the number of these on the road will be significantly higher when the weather is good.”