New ambulances to save crews' backs

SUFFOLK ambulance stations are to receive new state-of-the-art tail-lift vehicles by this time next year.A total of 34 new Mercedes/Modular ambulances are replacing the East Anglian service's oldest vehicles in three phases from now until the end of March next year.

SUFFOLK ambulance stations are to receive new state-of-the-art tail-lift vehicles by this time next year.

A total of 34 new Mercedes/Modular ambulances are replacing the East Anglian service's oldest vehicles in three phases from now until the end of March next year.

Each one will have the facility to lift patients hydraulically into the ambulance, reducing the strain on ambulance crews' backs.

The first 11 vehicles will be in use across Suffolk, Norfolk and Cambridgeshire.


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Locations for the other 23, due to come into service between July and March, have yet to be decided.

Paul Henry, assistant director of operations, said: "We're continuing our strategy to deliver current state-of-the-art ambulances with European Committee for Standardisation compliance.

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"They meet best practice for manual handling operations and each vehicle comes with new medical kit."

The vehicles, coachbuilt by UVModular on to a Mercedes chassis, cost about £110,000 each, and are leases over five years by the ambulance service.

Mr Henry added: "The Mercedes has proved to be a reliable and durable workhorse and it's the first time since the East Anglian NHS Trust was formed in 1994 that all our vehicles have been of the same make."

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