UK Government

Maritime And Coastguard Agency: East Susssex Coastguard rescue teams assist the NHS

Press Release   •   Jan 15, 2010 10:37 GMT

Coastguard Rescue Teams have been involved across East Sussex in helping with transfers of essential staff in and out of the Eastbourne and Hastings Conquest Hospitals.

A call for help from East Sussex Hospitals NHS Trust was answered last Thursday afternoon when Coastguard teams from Eastbourne, Bexhill, Hastings and Rye Bay were sent out to transfer vital nursing staff and doctors to and from work at both hospitals in their Coastguard 4X4 vehicles.

This service continued right through the weekend and Monday often from 0530 to 2300. With a brief respite on Tuesday teams are out again today Wednesday following fresh snowfall this morning.

Sector Manager Nick Jury said:

"Her Majesty’s Coastguard is very happy to be able to help the NHS to keep the hospitals running and I am very proud of the way the teams have responded to these long hours of work in very challenging conditions but from them I would have expected nothing less. Some of the tasks have included:

•    Bringing in a woman to Eastbourne who was in labour

•    Taking a stranded diabetic back home where their insulin was

•    Towing out 3 stranded ambulances

•    Bringing in a surgeon to work which ensured no cancellation of his list.

•    And even towing out 2 AA vehicles which had got stuck trying to ascend a steep hill.

"We know that there are many other instances of similar assistance being rendered around the coast in the current adverse weather and of course we are watching the weather forecast with great interest!"

Notes to Editors

The MCA is a partner in the Sea Vision UK campaign to raise awareness and understanding of the sea and maritime activities.  Sea Vision promotes the importance and economic value of the sector and works to highlight the exciting range of activities and career opportunities available to young people within the UK growing maritime sector. www.seavisionuk.org

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