A FOX’S Biscuits worker facing a gloomy Christmas after breaking his leg following a slip on an icy Uttoxeter road has hit out after lying stricken in the road for nearly an hour-and-a-half waiting for an ambulance.
Kevin Swinson, of Davies Drive, is also angry at the lack of grit in School Road which he says contributed to his fall earlier this month.
Mr Swinson says he is now worried about the future after having to sign off from work at Fox’s factory in Cheadle Road where he has worked for 25 years.
He told the Advertiser: “I absolutely shattered my tibia and fibia and had to have a three-and-a-half hour operation to fix it.
“I am concerned about how long I had to wait for an ambulance and the fact the road had not been gritted when it was absolutely freezing.
“I was in a hell of a lot of pain and freezing cold and a couple came out with a blanket and a hot water bottle to keep me warm after an ambulance had been rung.
“A first responder came after about 15 minutes and then a paramedic but no ambulance came for nearly an hour-and-a-half while I was still lying in the road.
“I was very disappointed in that service and the whole system.
“I’m very worried about the future now as it looks like I could be off indefinitely.”
A spokesman for West Midlands Ambulance acknowledged the arrival of the ambulance took longer than it would have liked but said there had been a spike in the number of 999 calls that morning.
He said: “West Midlands Ambulance Service received a call to reports of a man having fallen at the junction of School Road and Copes Way, Uttoxeter at 12.06pm on Wednesday, December 5.
“A triage of the call led to it being classed as a Green 2 (non like-threatening) call requiring attendance within 30 minutes.
“A Community First Responder was first to arrive at the scene at 12.17pm. A Community Paramedic in a rapid response vehicle arrived at 12.46pm. An ambulance crew arrived at 1.11pm, left the scene with the patient at 1.25pm, arriving at Queen’s Hospital in Burton at 1.56pm.
“We acknowledge there was a delay in getting an ambulance to the patient. Unfortunately, in the two hours preceding this call, there was a sharp and sudden increase in 999 calls within Staffordshire. Many of the calls in the area were to life threatening conditions such as a cardiac arrest, a stroke and chest pains.
“Consequently, all every ambulance in the county was assigned to a patient and, in many cases, taking them to hospital. Staff in the control room were constantly reviewing this case and attempting to get the first available ambulance to him but the Trust will always prioritise life-threatening calls first.
“As soon as an ambulance became available, it was sent. We regret that, because of the soaring number of 999 calls that morning, this took longer than we would have liked.
“In total there were 69 calls over those two hours with 465 calls within Staffordshire over the day.”
County councillor, Mike Maryon, cabinet member for Highways and Transport, also explained that the authority cannot grit all roads.
He said: “This is a very unfortunate incident and I would like to express my sympathy to the individual concerned.
“Staffordshire County Council’s gritting map covers 43 per cent of the county’s road – much higher than many other areas.
“Even with all the resources that are available to us, we know that we can’t cover 100 per cent of our communities on demand especially when the conditions are as difficult as those we have experienced over recent years.”