First Responders get behind the wheel

In September, Oundle Community First Responders were able to upgrade their emergency response vehicle to a new estate car.

Local businesses were approached to raise £3500 a year for three years, and four businesses agreed to donate £500 each for three years. The responders will need to continue raising the remaining £1500 a year to support running the vehicle.

The support from local businesses came from: Barton Petroleum, Pete Barford Productions, Nene and Welland Oddfellows, CI Consultancy, Pest Professionals, and MPB Structures Ltd. The new car has more storage for their equipment and is more robust.

first responders

“The day after we got the car we had a call saying a farmer had been crushed by a cow,” said Paul Brackley, a first responder. “We would not have been able to get up the roadway if it had not been for the new car.”

The first response team are sent to locations from which 999 has been called within a ten-mile radius of Oundle, and they treat the patient as much as possible. Mr Brackley said that a first responder’s job involves “keeping the patient alive to the best of our ability until the paramedics arrive”.

Becoming a first responder involves a four-day course to reach the first level, along with a refresher course every year, and meetings every month. Mr Brackley has been involved for 14 years and is a level 3 first responder, along with four others in the team of eleven.

Andy Skinner had his first experience with first responders when his father had a serious fall. After calling for an ambulance, the first responders arrived in minutes. He wrote on the NextDoor platform: “At a time when the ambulance services nationwide are stretched to breaking point, with long waiting times for less serious emergencies, Oundle residents are very lucky indeed to have this service which certainly isn’t commonplace for many people.”

Gwyneth Angel
December 4, 2019