Herts health column: Ambulance medical director on staying safe this fireworks season
PUBLISHED: 08:59 31 October 2020
Ahead of Bonfire Night on November 5, East of England Ambulance Service NHS Trust’s medical director and deputy CEO, Dr Tom Davis, reflects on what it means for the emergency services and how you can stay safe.
He said: “Like many colleagues, I approach October 31 and November 5 with some trepidation. For the ambulance service, the combination of the suddenly darker evenings and colder weather are a reminder that winter is on its way, with the additional pressures that will inevitably bring.
“Add in bonfires and the ready availability of fireworks – and their potential for causing accidents – and you will appreciate that this is not the favourite season for most of our staff.
“COVID-19 has made everything different, with Halloween and Bonfire Night celebrations no exception, but our key message remains that we want everyone to enjoy themselves safely.”
“We normally advise people to take part in organised displays, but for many that won’t be possible this year, so please be extra careful if you choose to have a bonfire or firework display at home.
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“Check with your local fire and rescue service to get good advice on how to safely handle fireworks and organise a display at home.”
Being COVID-19 safe:
“If you are able to attend an organised event or are holding an event at home for family or friends, remember that COVID-19 precautions need to stay in place. Think of others: think hands, face and space in line with government advice.”
“November can be a month where it can swiftly change from balmy autumn evenings to sudden cold snaps. So, if you’re planning on taking part in outdoors events over Halloween or November 5, be mindful of the cold weather.
“The very young and the elderly can be most susceptible to the effects of cold, so ensure they are well wrapped up and check on them frequently.
“We hope everyone enjoys Halloween and Bonfire Night safely and, as we head into winter, we ask for all the public to continue showing us the wonderful support they gave us at the beginning of the year.
“By staying safe you can help keep our staff free to look after those patients who need us most.”
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