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‘Please Use Ambulances Wisely on New Year’s Eve’

Ambulance bosses are again appealing for people in the region to use their emergency service wisely as they complete their final preparations for what is traditionally the busiest night of the year - New Year’s Eve.

Dr David Macklin, Executive Director of Operations at the Trust, warns that 999 calls for trivial incidents and minor conditions can potentially put those with life-threatening illnesses and injuries at risk by diverting ambulances elsewhere.

He said:  “We don’t want to spoil anyone’s celebrations but we are asking those who are out and about on New Year’s Eve to drink sensibly and stay safe to ensure they don’t put their own health or that of others at risk. 

“Please be aware of how much you’re drinking, eat beforehand, plan ahead for transport home and look after yourself and your friends.

“It’s better to leave your car at home, use public transport or arrange alternative transport such as a taxi. If you are going to a party and know you're going to be driving the next day, know your limits. You can choose lower strength drinks, drink singles rather than doubles, and be mindful of home-poured measures. It’s also a good idea to alternate the alcoholic drinks you do have with soft drinks or water and stop drinking alcohol well before the end of the night so you are free of the effects of alcohol by the following morning.

“Most of all please remember that the 999 number should only be used in serious medical emergencies and people should use the service responsibly to help ensure that our valuable resources are available for those who need them most.”

As in previous years the ambulance service is running various initiatives across the county to ensure people with alcohol-related illnesses and injuries don’t place too much pressure on the service and on emergency departments in hospitals across Yorkshire. This includes using community medical units and police and paramedic teams in busy city centres across the region.

Dr David Macklin continued: “If New Year’s Eve this year reflects those of previous years we will also have staff who find themselves on the receiving end of verbal and physical abuse. This behaviour is completely unacceptable and we will prosecute anyone who is offensive towards our staff who are there to help people in need. Please respect our staff.”

Produced By: Corporate Communications Department