999 service gears up for busy Easter weekend

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There are fears that demand on the emergency ambulance service could exceed predictions this weekend with calls rising to between 10 and 15 per cent above normal.

Ambulance crews will deal with a range of emergency incidents over the four days and extra staff have been brought in to staff ambulances and response cars so that the anticipated rise in 999 calls can be dealt with safely.

A West Midlands Ambulance Service spokesperson said: “The Easter holiday always proves to be a busy time for the ambulance service with the public taking the opportunity to enjoy the first holiday break of the year.

“We anticipate 999 calls to rise and therefore we would ask the public to continue to take extra care in the wintry conditions.

“We would also ask the public to think carefully before calling 999 for an emergency ambulance, thereby allowing us to attend to patients’ suffering life threatening illness and injury.”

During the bank holiday period, the ambulance service will be working alongside other agencies to ensure patients receive the appropriate care and treatment. In cases where illness and injury is not life threatening, it may be appropriate to consider alternatives to calling 999 such as NHS Direct, Walk-in Centres or local pharmacists.