SCAS Hazardous Area Response Team Celebrates 3rd Anniversary

2013 was a busy year for the Hazardous Area Response Team at South Central Ambulance Service NHS Foundation Trust (SCAS) attending 680 incidents since 1 April 2013. Over the last three years HART have gone from strength to strength with new training and skills being introduced since their inception.  31 January 2014 saw them celebrate the 3rd anniversary of their launch.

Hazardous Area Response Teams (HART) are Paramedics and Technicians who have additional training and skills which allow them to attend a variety of incidents.   HART was started in a bid to bring ambulance staff into the ‘hot zone’ of an incident, where traditionally ambulance service personnel wouldn’t be allowed in order to provide triage, treatment and care to patients.  Previously colleagues from other Emergency Services would retrieve patients from the ‘hot zone’ and bring them to ambulance personnel in the safe area.

John Dyer, Head of Resilience and Specialist Operations said “Taking care to patients, wherever they might be is very important. SCAS HART have proved that a close knit team working in partnership with other emergency services can ensure high quality care is given to patients as soon as possible.”

Over the last year HART have been dispatched to various incidents across the four counties it serves.  Including:

  • Flooding
  • Persons injured while at height
  • Multiple casualty incidents
  • Chemical incidents
  • Water incidents
  • Complex Road Traffic Collisions
  • Aircraft Incidents
  • Fires in various locations
  • Difficult access to remote areas.

Paul Haly, HART Team Leader & Paramedic, said “The ability to take pre-hospital care into locations where traditionally Paramedic interventions would never have reached is both an enjoyable and challenging experience.

The knowledge and increased awareness that I have gained in HART has enabled me to develop both personally and professionally, and helped me progress my career as a Paramedic.

Working as a valued member of a team has allowed us to provide effective care inside the risk area at a diverse range of incidents.”

The HART Team are mobilised to incidents via the Emergency Operations Centres in the SCAS area, however any Ambulance Service area can request the attendance of the HART team.