Ireland Pulls 167 Ambulances Due to Possible Fire Hazard


 
 

CLAIRE BRENNAN | | Wednesday, October 28, 2009


HEALTH chiefs had to pull 167 modern ambulances off the roads after four of them inexplicably caught fire. The EUR22million specialist Mercedes Sprinter fleet was recalled for safety inspections.

In the most serious incident an ambulance caught fire while carrying a patient at the K Club in Co Kildare last Christmas. The first blaze happened in Portlaoise, Co Laois, at the start of 2008. Another burst into flames at Tullyesker, outside Drogheda, Co Louth, in January.

It has now emerged there have been similar incidents in Wales in August last year. But no action was taken by the HSE until the incidents took place here. Despite the accidents all of the vehicles are still being used for emergency call-outs. But the HSE has insisted if the fault is found to be commonplace all the vehicles will have to be scrapped. If that happens the taxpayer will be hit with the further cost of subcontracting emergency transport cover.

A HSE national ambulance service spokesman would not confirm the exact cause of the faults but said that investigations were still ongoing. He added: "The causes of incidents have not yet been proven." The vehicles make up just over a third of 480 ambulances in Ireland and were a part of a major upgrade of existing emergency call-out services.

Labour health spokeswoman Jan O'Sullivan said the cost showed lack of financial sense within the HSE. Ms O'Sullivan added: "It's hard to believe this country gave out that kind of money without guarantees on the ambulances. "If there is any risk of a fault they should be automatically replaced."




Connect: Have a thought or feedback about this? Add your comment now
Related Topics: Ambulances

What's Your Take? Comment Now ...

Featured Careers & Jobs in EMS





 

Get JEMS in Your Inbox

 

Fire EMS Blogs


Blogger Browser

Today's Featured Posts

 

EMS Airway Clinic

Simulation-Based Assessment Facilitates Learning & Enhances Clinical Judgment

Simulation is an educational tool that can be used to develop and refine clinical skills of the student in a controlled environment before they progress to becoming practicing clinicians.
More >

Multimedia Thumb

Delaware Bus Crash MCI

A view from the triage sector as EMS crews work on several patients.
Watch It >


Multimedia Thumb

REMSA Programs Helps Reduce Hospital Visits

Community paramedic effort goes into service.
Watch It >


Multimedia Thumb

City Official Challenges San Francisco Fire Chief

Ambulance response times among problems noted by city supervisor.
Watch It >


Multimedia Thumb

Texas Ambulance Crash

Victoria ambulance collides with civilian vehicle.
Watch It >


Multimedia Thumb

North Dakota Oilfield Medics

Tactics used in offshore platforms tailored to the remote areas.
More >


Multimedia Thumb

Delaware Bus Crash MCI

A view from the triage sector as EMS crews work on several patients.
More >


Multimedia Thumb

CO Leak at Illinois School

Girard incident sends over 130 to hospitals.
More >


Multimedia Thumb

LMA MAD Nasal™

Needle-free intranasal drug delivery.
Watch It >


Multimedia Thumb

Field Bridge Xpress ePCR on iPad, Android, Kindle Fire

Sneak peek of customizable run forms & more.
Watch It >


Multimedia Thumb

The AmbuBus®, Bus Stretcher Conversion Kit - EMS Today 2013

AmbuBus®, Bus Stretcher all-hazards preparedness & response tool
Watch It >


More Product Videos >