Cashel is to lose its second ambulance if a proposed roster change goes ahead, heard this month’s Town Council meeting.
Cllr Martin Browne (SF) said it’s “absolutely crazy”, given that there had been reports of people lying on the local Rugby pitch “for 30 minutes” before an ambulance could arrive. The ambulance drivers are fighting the changes. “They are being threatened with new rosters,” said Cllr Browne. The problems emanate from Wexford. “It’s appeasing Brendan Howlin, not the people of Cashel. We’ve lost the Tax Office, Alza, the Town Council, and now the ambulance. Where is it going to stop? We need to get behind the workers,” he said.
Cllr Séan McCarthy said it would be “disastrous” given Cashel’s location, and distance from the bigger cities of Cork, Waterford and Limerick. If a heart attack victim is treated within 90 minutes, “there is no damage to the heart. They can play football the next day.” Cllr McCarthy said he hoped the ambulance would not “take the long way round to Waterford”.
Cllr Martin Browne (Ind), a fire fighter, said he had personal experience of the necessity for two ambulances. There were two examples in the last two months. In one incident near Tipp town, a fireman came upon an accident and rang the ambulance “straight away”. He was asked three times on the phone was he sure he needed the emergency services. The injured person “suffered external injuries and had to be cut from the car.” If an incident happens in Cashel, one ambulance “hasn’t a hope” of responding elsewhere, stressed Cllr Browne (Ind). In a crash near Golden, where a man went into a ploughed field, it took the emergency services “35 minutes” to respond because “they were wondering could an ambulance get there faster from Clonmel.” The man, who had “five or six fractured vertebrae” was left lying in the field for 32 minutes before the ambulance arrived.
Cllrs agreed to write to the HSE in in Cork and Kilkenny, demanding retention of the second ambulance.