East of England Ambulance Service apologises after motorcyclist in Cambs crash waits almost an hour for help

11:04 16 April 2014

The East of England Ambulance Service.

The East of England Ambulance Service.

Archant

A motorcyclist who sustained potentially life-changing injuries in a crash had to wait almost an hour for an ambulance.

David Pitkin, 44, who lives in Ramsey, was riding along Toll Bar Lane, Keyston, with friends on Sunday when he lost control and his bike left the road – and he and the machine went flying through the air into a field.

Mr Pitkin’s friend Simon Moore, of Hartford, rang the ambulance service at about 2.35pm, but initially got through to the East Midlands Ambulance Service as the accident happened about a mile from the county border.

The East of England Ambulance Service (EEAS) was alerted but it took 52 minutes for an ambulance to arrive.

Paramedics requested help from Magpas which airlifted Mr Pitkin to Addenbrooke’s Hospital in Cambridge.

Because of the nature of the injuries, EEAS had 30 minutes to get to the biker, but said the ambulance it originally sent had to be diverted to a more urgent call.

Mr Moore, 38, told The Hunts Post: “David had broken his left humerus in his upper arm and it was stopping the blood from getting to his hand.

“They had to reset his arm in the field because it had taken so long for the ambulance to arrive.

“He was in danger of losing it if he had waited to get this treatment at Addenbrooke’s.

“I cannot fault the paramedics who came – they were fantastic – but it is very worrying that it took an hour for the ambulance to arrive. It’s obvious that there is flaw in the system.

“I know it was close to the county border but I tried to call the ambulance service five times trying to chase where it was and went through to East Midlands.”

He added: “He was in and out of consciousness and he was struggling to breath so I don’t see how this wasn’t a high priority.”

The EEAS spokesman said: “Firstly we would like to apologise to the patient for the delay in getting an ambulance to him. The initial ambulance that was sent had to be diverted to a more serious call, and the next available ambulance arrived 52 minutes after the initial 999 call.

“We are working hard to improve our response times and that is why we are actively recruiting 400 student paramedics across the region and increasing our fleet, so that we can get more ambulances on the road which will provide a better service to our patients.”

Last night (Tuesday) Mr Pitkin, who also suffered broken ribs and an air pocket in a lung, was expected to be discharged from hospital.

2 comments

  • Although i live a long way away i am following with interest the failure of our ambulance services to provide a service.

    Report this comment

    Paulofsherwood

    Wednesday, April 16, 2014

  • So the ambulance service has apologised, well jolly good, the problems gone away... NO IT HASN'T ! We need actions and not excuses. If they have to prioritise responses then they have misjudged to the point of negligence. This poor bloke could have lost his arm and why? Because some bean counter has failed to ensure the service is sufficient for needs.... lets have a sacking, that way the replacement might focus on the problem and not how to apologise!

    Report this comment

    mike

    Wednesday, April 16, 2014

The views expressed in the above comments do not necessarily reflect the views of this site

More news stories

Cheetahs at Hamerton Zoo Park

Hamerton Zoo Park has issued a warning to visitors, after a member of the public climbed a barrier to get closer to the cheetah enclosure.

10:30
Medway Centre, in Huntingdon.

After years of negotiations, Huntingdon Town Council has voted to agree a deal between the authority and Huntingdonshire District Council for the exchange of buildings that will allow for redevelopment of key sites.

Dr Nik Johnson has announced he will stand for the role of mayor of the devolved authority for Cambridgeshire.

A doctor from Hinchingbrooke Hospital has announced his candidacy for the newly created position of mayor of Cambridgeshire and Peterborough.

Firefighters rescued a dog that was stuck in a rabbit warren in St Neots

Reports of people calling the emergency services to help animals are increasing, according to figures from Cambridgeshire Fire and Rescue Service.

Get your skates on this winter and enjoy one of the UK's most stylish open-air ice rinks nestled amongst the trees in Parkers Piece Park in the heart of Cambridge

Set in the heart of vibrant Cambridge, The North Pole Cambridge Ice Rink is back throughout the festive season; come and join us as we open from the 18th November through to 4th January.

Read more

Most read stories

Local business directory

Cambridgeshire's trusted business finder

Show Job Lists

Digital Edition

Image
Read the Hunts Post e-edition E-edition

Newsletter Sign Up