Ambulance smashed as man chases paramedics and attacks police officer
Paramedics were attacked and their ambulance was trashed as they tried to treat a man in the West Midlands today.
Crew members were chased into their vehicle by a man, who then pushed one of them and smashed a window during the terrifying ordeal.
West Midlands Police said a man had been arrested after a weapon was used to smash a window of the ambulance at about 7am on Thursday.
The incident happened in Handsworth, Birmingham, after the ambulance crew attempted to treat the alleged perpetrator.
The medics were chased into their ambulance before the vehicle was vandalised and a police officer was assaulted.
A West Midlands Police spokesman said: "Police were called by ambulance colleagues to reports of an assault in Heathfield Road, Handsworth, at 7.30am this morning.
"It is believed a paramedic was pushed by a member of the public who then threw an object at the ambulance damaging the glass.
"A police officer was later kicked in her leg and had her fingers twisted when making the arrest.
"Fortunately the police officer and paramedic were not seriously injured in this assault."
West Midlands Ambulance Service chief executive Anthony Marsh added: "Although physically unhurt, this must have been a terrifying ordeal for our staff.
"We will provide support for them going forwards, but this is something that simply should not happen.
"No one deserves to be assaulted, but our staff are there to help people in their hour of need; they are there to protect and save the lives of the public."
A 40-year-old man, of no fixed address, has been arrested on suspicion of criminal damage, malicious communications and two counts of assault.
The ordeal comes after West Midlands Ambulance Service chiefs called for a 'zero tolerance' approach when dealing with attacks on the emergency services.
Tougher sentences were brought in under The Assaults on Emergency Workers Bill passed in Parliament earlier this year.
The bill, which covers attacks on all 999 staff including volunteers, means people who assault emergency service workers can now be jailed for up to 12 months, instead of the previous maximum of six.
West Midlands Ambulance Service said it will now be pushing for a tough punishment for the perpetrator.
Stuart Gardner, chair of the Staff Side union, said: “We will work with the trust to push for charges to be brought against this individual and should he be convicted, we hope that the courts will use the full powers now in place through the new Assaults on Emergency Workers (Offences) Act 2018 to hand down a punishment that will not leave ambulance staff feeling let down.
“The public have made their feelings known about such cases and we hope the courts will take that on board.”
Today's incident was just the latest attack on ambulance crews to shock the public.
During the World Cup in July, an ambulance was smashed up in London after England beat Sweden 2-0 in the quarter finals. Four people have since appeared in court, where they will return in January.
Meanwhile in February, a West Midlands Ambulance Service crew was subjected to an abusive message telling them to move their car.
The woman who lived in the Stoke-On-Trent street and wrote the note did not like the ambulance parking near her house.
The note, shared by paramedic Mike Duggan, read: “If this van is for anyone but No.14 then you have no right to park here.
“I couldn’t give a s**t if the whole street collapses.
“Now move your van from outside my house.”
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