Waiting…and waiting…for an ambulance. Penarth Coastguard officers hold up screens behind which a woman is being treated by RNLI lifeboat crew members and Penarth Coastguard first responders for back injuries . It took over three hours for an ambulance to arrive (Penarth Coastguard photo)

The Welsh Ambulance Trust is being asked to explain the long wait endured by a woman who sustained back injuries in a fall on Penarth Esplanade at the weekend.

The woman is understood to have slipped and fallen injuring her back and spine.

Eyewitnesses say an ambulance was immediately summoned to the scene  – but three hours later still hadn’t arrived .

In the meantime Penarth Coastguard officers and Penarth RNLI crew members – all of whom are trained “first responders” and are qualified to administer first aid – placed the injured woman on a stretcher and made her as comfortable as possible.

Coastguard officers had to hold up temporary canvas screens to protect the casualty from the sun and from the unwanted attention of passers-by whilst she was being treated. Neither the Coastguards nor the RNLI  have made any comment about the protracted ambulance delay.

The incident – on Sunday –  is the second such recent emergency on the Esplanade in which Penarth Coastguard officers have been involved .

Penarth Coastguard officers also rendered help as first responders when a casualty – understood to have been a young girl – was struck by a car on Penarth Esplanade on the evening of June 25th  before an ambulance arrived on the scene (Penarth Coastguard photo)_

On the evening of June 25th  a casualty – reported to be young girl –  was accidentally struck by a car understood to have been backing out of a parking slot . On this occasion  Penarth Coastguard officers and police officers rendered first aid whilst there was another wait for an ambulance.

Ambulance response times continue to be a hot topic in the Welsh Assembly were beleaguered  Labour Health Minister Vaughan Gething has yet to achieve a sustained improvement in the service.

Last month the Welsh Ambulance NHS Trust announced the appointment of the former ChiefExecurive of the South Australia ambuklance service Jason Killens – as the new Chief Executive of the Welsh Ambulance Service.

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  1. penarthblog says:


  2. penarthian says:

    I wonder if Vaughan Gethings child was hit by a car on the esplanade then he’d be happy to wait for 3 hours ??
    He needs to get a grip!
    That’s what happens when Labour runs the NHS in Wales.

  3. Pete says:


  4. John says:

    Simply unacceptable but, actually, being accepted passively by us all of the time.
    When I had an ambulance called for me for chest pain it took 6 hours, and had come from Cwmmer (Port Talbot).

    I don’t come here to bash politicians but Vaughan has nowhere to hide here – he should do the only honourable thing and resign. Keeping in the post and continuing to achieve nothing will just make things worse.

  5. Hugh says:

    What do you expect? Thanks to Mr Blair and his Labour friends in Wales and Scotland, the UK population increased by 10 million between 1997 and 2007, with net migration running at around 250,000 each year since – and public services simply cannot cope. So the solution is in your hands, if you don’t want to wait for hours for an ambulance, or months for a hospital appointment, vote for whoever is going to control immigration.

  6. When I see it I can’t believe it yet it happens so often. Why do people think the proper way to park on the front is to drive in. They can see the spaces point away from the direction of travel and reversing in is the right way to do it. You get a better view from the car and more importantly you don’t have reverse out to leave and no danger of running anyone over. Perhaps the vale can put up some signage.

  7. AK says:

    Reverse parking into angled parking bays does not seem to be a skill of many elderly Penarth drivers.

    In both cases, thank goodness for the skills of our lifeboat and coasguard volunteers.

  8. parsons says:

    This is so frightening, 3hours plus waiting when you are feeling so ill and often people would be
    alone in their home. I have seen ambulance people waiting up to two hours with ill people on stretchers in The Heath because no beds in A & E so they are spending time there not being free of their stretchers to answer call outs. If a large area/room was selected in The Heath eg a pre A & E area where people could wait and feel safer then the paramedics could get to people quicker.

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