Essex County Fire and Rescue Service

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Service Supports NHS Ambulance Response Times in Colchester

A scheme which sees ambulance crews using Essex County Fire and Rescue Service stations as response hubs has been extended to Colchester Fire Station today, Monday February 15.

The station, which is in Cowdray Avenue, Colchester, will be used as what the ambulance service describes as a dynamic activation point.

East of England Ambulance Service NHS Trust (EEAST) crews will be allocated an identified parking area located on ECFRS station premises between 8am and 10pm. They will respond during these times to emergency calls with an additional advantage of the crews being able to use fire station toilet facilities, rest areas and take on some light refreshments.

These new dynamic activation points have been chosen to help improve response times to patients.

It is the eighth fire station to join the scheme with dynamic activation points already having proven successful at Frinton, Old Harlow, Chelmsford, Great Baddow, Braintree, Newport and Thaxted Fire Stations.

Assistant Divisional Officer Mark Wilby, ECFRS Project Manager, said: “The facility allows the ambulance service to have more people in the right places when they are needed and should get ambulances to people quicker. It has already been successful at our other locations so we are now extending the scheme to Colchester.
 
“Firefighters very often work alongside ambulance teams at the scene of road traffic collisions and by providing ambulance colleagues with a dynamic activation point, there will be the positive practical benefits but also the move should help to develop relationships on the ground and potentially lead to even greater understanding.
 
“The Service already shares facilities with partners and we are pleased to be able to build on our relationships and work more closely with other blue light colleagues in this way.”
 
Gary Baines, EEAST Senior Locality Manager for North Essex, said: “This is a great opportunity, not only to improve response times but also in terms of expanding partnership working across the county and making the best use of resources.”

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