IN March last year, ambulance bosses apologised for leaving a young South Tyneside woman with a broken back lying in agony on a freezing-cold riverside.
Lynsey Mullen, 22, had to wait for more than an hour for an ambulance crew to arrive after she suffered a shattered vertebra in a sledging accident at Hebburn Riverside Park.
Her mother, Julie Moon, 45, said: “The ambulance service admitted missing four opportunities to send out a rapid-response paramedic to Lynsey, meaning that it was almost two hours after the first call for help was made before she was taken to hospital.”
Two months earlier, the family of a sick pensioner who was forced to wait five hours for an ambulance, hit out at the delay.
Wheelchair-bound Sylvia Hopps, 91, was left in agony when an ambulance was called to her home in Coble Landing, South Shields, at 5.40pm on January 6 but did not arrive until 10.50pm to take the great grandmother to hospital.
During that time, her daughters, Mandy Hume, 57, and Sylvia Elliott, 68, who both have disabilities, had been trying their best to make their mum as comfortable as they could.
The family complained to the North East Ambulance Service, saying they were “outraged” by the delay.
In February last year, the family of Henrietta Rowan, 82, were angry after she had to wait almost four hours for an ambulance after falling in the bathroom at her home in Avon Road, Hebburn.
Ambulance officials apologised – blaming a near doubling in emergency calls it was handling.
Three ambulances were initially sent to the Hebburn pensioner’s home – but each one had to be diverted elsewhere.
Mrs Rowan was released from South Tyneside District Hospital after an X-ray found no broken bones, but had to be brought home by her son, as no ambulance was available for the return journey.