999 caller’s wait

WAITING GAME: Jane Townsend with her son, Jake, who waited two-and-a-half hours for an ambulance. (d05101162)

WAITING GAME: Jane Townsend with her son, Jake, who waited two-and-a-half hours for an ambulance. (d05101162)

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A SCHOOLBOY who broke his collarbone had to wait two-and-a-half hours to be taken to hospital.

Staff at Earlsheaton Technology College dialled 999 when 14-year-old Jake Townsend was injured during an after school rugby practice.

A rapid response vehicle reached the school in Old Bank Road within five minutes and it was agreed that Jake needed to be taken to Dewsbury and District Hospital by ambulance.

But Yorkshire Ambulance Service (YAS) took two-and-a-half hours to get an ambulance to the school because of high demand.

Jake’s mum, Jane Townsend, said she was disgusted at how long her son had been made to wait.

“He was in pain all that time,” she said. “All they could do was give him gas and air. He had a full canister.”

Mrs Townsend, 36, of Princess Road, Chickenley, said an ambulance heading to the school was sent elsewhere.

She said: “There was an ambulance en route to the school at one point but it was called away. Jake went from first to seventh in line.

“It was 3.45pm when the school rang us and they’d already called the ambulance. It was 6.15pm when it arrived.”

YAS director of operations Sarah Fatchett said: “We would like to apologise to Jake and his family for the distress caused by the delay in an ambulance being available to transport him to hospital which was due to high demand for the 999 service at the time.

“An ambulance clinician was at the scene within five minutes and was able to provide immediate medical assessment and treatment, and stay with the patient, monitoring his condition, until the conveying ambulance arrived.”

She said the service had spoken to the family and would be investigating further on its behalf.