Ambulance in 1hour 20 minute call out

A TAXI firm boss is demanding to know why it took an ambulance an hour and 20 minutes to reach an injured driver after his car crashed into a ditch.Two schoolboys on their way home with cabbie Ray Smith scrambled to safety and ran home to raise the alarm, as injured Mr Smith lay injured with a broken arm.

A TAXI firm boss is demanding to know why it took an ambulance an hour and 20 minutes to reach an injured driver after his car crashed into a ditch.

Two schoolboys on their way home with cabbie Ray Smith scrambled to safety and ran home to raise the alarm, as injured Mr Smith lay injured with a broken arm.

David Brett, of Sudbury Town Taxis, said: "My driver was seriously injured, he was in a lot of pain. There were two young schoolboys in the vehicle who thankfully escaped uninjured but it could have been a lot worse.

"It is just not good enough to have to wait this long for an ambulance, I am just relieved we were not dealing with three deaths this morning."


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The dramatic events unfolded on Monday afternoon after Mr Smith, picked up friends Matthew Johnson and Jack Ray, both nine, from Stoke-by-Nayland Middle School to take them home to Little Cornard.

At around 4.25pm the taxi veered off the road and crashed into a ditch at Upper Lane, Little Cornard. Realising he was injured the taxi driver managed to call an ambulance and the two boys escaped from the vehicle to raise the alarm.

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The friends ran to Matthew's home at nearby Yorley Farm to alert his father Clive Johnson.

Mr Johnson went to the scene and realised Mr Smith was badly injured and trapped in the ditch. Mr Brett had also arrived and made a second call to the ambulance service and was told help was on its way.

The farmer then returned home to collect a forklift truck to pull the taxi out of the ditch and police officers arrived on the scene and an ambulance was called. Paramedics from Essex arrived at the scene at around 6.15pm.

Mr Smith was treated on the scene before he was taken to West Suffolk Hospital, Bury St Edmunds, suffering with a broken arm and severe facial injuries. Yesterday, he underwent surgery to repair his arm, which was fractured in two places.

Mr Brett and Mr Johnson said they want answers over the delays.

"To have to wait this long is simply not acceptable, I am disgusted. As well as my driver there was also children involved, what if they were all trapped and more seriously injured. I am now concerned for the welfare of my drivers, customers and the general public at large," said Mr Brett.

Mr Johnson said: "Both my son and his friend were very shocked and Ray was badly injured, and I want to know why it took so long for an ambulance to arrive. I am very concerned about this, in theory all three could be dead. It shouldn't take this long for an ambulance to get to an accident."

A spokesman for the Essex Ambulance Trust said: "Although the incident was in Suffolk the call came through to us because it was made on a mobile phone and we sent out a vehicle at 4.29pm.

"It had a long way to go because it was coming from the Colchester area and it also had difficulty finding the location.

"The roads were very narrow and some were blocked by other vehicles. The crew eventually found the accident and arrived on the scene at 5.58pm. It was just one of those things were it was dark and the crew had difficulty finding the place."

Government guidelines say 75% of ambulances called to life-threatening situations should arrive within eight minutes. Ambulances should reach non life-threatening incidents within 19 minutes 95% of the time.

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