Ambulance bosses: Think before you dial 999

St Helens Star: Mad Friday’ as it’s traditionally known - sees a spike in emergency calls being received by the ambulance service Mad Friday’ as it’s traditionally known - sees a spike in emergency calls being received by the ambulance service

AMBULANCE service bosses are urging party-goers to drink responsibly over Christmas - and to think before they dial 999.

The Friday before Christmas – ‘Mad Friday’ as it’s traditionally known - always sees a spike in emergency calls being received by the ambulance service.

On that day alone last year, North West Ambulance Service attended 14per cent more incidents compared to the same day the previous year.

The figure is expected to rise again this year, according to the service.

NWAS Director of Operations, Derek Cartwright said: “In genuine life-threatening emergencies, time matters. If people stop and think about drink this Christmas and take a sensible approach, they can play their part in ensuring ambulance crews are free to attend to vulnerable and very poorly people.

"Calls received over the Christmas period in 2012 included blistered feet from wearing high heels, swollen and twisted ankles from slipping on ice and people calling to get a lift home as a taxi wasn’t available none of which required the use of the emergency services.

"NWAS urges people to keep ambulances free to attend to those with serious life threatening conditions."

He added: “It is also important to remember hangovers, headaches and feeling under the weather after a night out can generally be treated in your own home using medicine from your local pharmacist and getting plenty of rest.”

Call NHS 111 -a free advice service intended for ‘urgent but not life-threatening’ health issues which is available 24 hours a day, every day of the year.

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