Longbridge built MG6 on front line to help life savers

By Tristan Harris Wednesday 30 January 2013 Updated: 31/01 19:48

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Buy photos » Community first responders Neil Phipps and Bill Rice with West Midlands Ambulance Service paramedic Samantha Wilyman and fellow community first responders Mark McAndrew, Ashley Almquest, Terry Flower and Richard Jay.

A LONGBRIDGE-built MG6 GT is now being used for front line life-saving calls by the highly trained first responders who support West Midlands Ambulance Service.

The specially equipped vehicle is being used by the FastAid volunteers who are called to attend 999 calls in their designated area if it is thought they can get to the life-threatening situation quicker than an ambulance crew.

The car, with its distinctive diamond grade livery so it can be seen clearly, even at night, contains an ambulance service radio and automated external defibrillator, critical to saving patients who have suffered a cardiac arrest.

Richard Jay, vice-chairman of FastAid, said: “The cargo space in the MG6 is enormous and allows us to carry all of our specialist equipment with ease.”

Ashley Almquest, a FastAid volunteer, said the built-in satnav system in the MG6, which was easy to use, also proved extremely valuable to answering emergency calls.

“It can save us vital minutes when we are responding to an urgent call when someone’s life could depend on us getting to the scene quickly.”

The FastAid MG6 will mainly operate in Solihull and the greater Birmingham area, right up to the Bromsgrove border, including most of south Birmingham, along with Rubery, Wythall and Alvechurch.

It costs up to £2,000 to train and equip each FastAid responder.

Andy Jeynes, the West Midlands Ambulance Service community response manager, said the service was extremely grateful to MG for supplying the car.

"It’s already proved its worth on several call-outs when the speed of response, and being able to arrive on scene with the right kit, is crucial."

He added without the support of local companies and organisations, the community first responders would not be able to continue doing what they did so effectively.

For more on FastAid, visit www.fastaid.org.uk.

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