NZ teens hijack lone medic's ambulance

Paramedic was answering emergency call on her own when allegedly drug-addled teens forced their way into cab


WARKWORTH, N.Z. — Two N.Z. teens hijacked an ambulance with a lone paramedic inside and threatened to kill her if she didn't transport their friends who were overdosing.

The senior paramedic was answering an emergency call on her own when the allegedly drug-addled teens forced their way into the cab, yelling, punching and kicking the dashboard, according to the Herald.

"You need to hurry up and f****** drive bitch or I will f****** kill you," she was told, according to her incident report.

She reported that she alerted her colleagues via the handheld radio and slowed the ambulance, hoping to jump out.

But when one of the boys opened the passenger door, she pushed the more aggressive one out of the ambulance and kept driving, the Herald said.

After driving to an empty police station, she left the overdosing teen inside the ambulance and hid at the back of the station.

Police arrived to find the patient having a seizure from a suspected overdose on mushrooms.

The paramedic then had to take him to a hospital while he thrashed around. A police officer escorting her handcuffed the patient to the stretcher and then was bitten.

The incident highlights union concerns in N.Z. that single crewing of ambulances risks the safety of patients and providers.

A report showed that in 2010-2011, 37,000 of 336,000 emergency calls, or one in 10, were attended by paramedics working alone.

The Government plans to budget an extra $48 million over the next four years to pay for 100 new paramedics.

"This is placing a huge strain on ambulance officers and putting lives at risk," the Green Party wrote in a 2008 report. "No ambulance officer should be faced with the dilemma of having to choose between treating a patient or driving the ambulance to hospital."

 

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