The Liberal Democrats have warned malicious calls to the ambulance service are putting lives at risk as they reveal 3140 hoax calls have been made across the West Midlands Ambulance Service over the last three years.
With the UK in the midst of the Coronavirus pandemic, Liberal Democrat Health Spokesperson Munira Wilson has warned Ministers must ensure ambulance services have “the resources they need to educate people over the dangers that malicious calls pose.”
Figures uncovered by the Liberal Democrats under freedom of information reveal there have been 23,942 hoax calls recorded by nine out of England’s ten ambulance services in the last three years.
Liberal Democrat Health Spokesperson Munira Wilson said:
“Anyone who maliciously calls for an ambulance is putting lives in danger. An ambulance that is diverted to a hoax is one that is unavailable to save a life elsewhere.
“With the Covid-19 pandemic, we all know the strain that our health staff are under. Ministers must therefore ensure ambulance services have the resources they need to educate people over the dangers that malicious calls pose.”
Local Liberal Democrat, Ian Walker, and member of the West Midlands Ambulance Service board added:
“The Coronavirus crisis is an unprecedented threat. It is leaving the most vulnerable in our communities at risk and people are rightly worried about their loved ones.
“The people in our ambulance service are putting their lives on the line every single day to protect us. In turn, we have a moral obligation to do all we can to protect them.
"We are not only concerned about the number of hoax calls, but also people vandalising ambulances and equipment."