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West Midlands ambulance staff urge drivers to "buckle up and hang up" in summer safety campaign

By Staffordshire Newsletter  |  Posted: July 29, 2014

"Buckle up and hang up" to avoid ending up in an air ambulance

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The ambulance service covering the Staffordshire area is urging road users to take extra care in a new Summer Safety campaign designed to cut the toll death and injury toll of road accidents.

Ambulance staff and medics from the West Midlands Ambulance Service attended more than 16,000 road crashes across the West Midlands in 2031, an average of 300 a week. And they are aiming to being that figure down this year by reminding all road users to "use common sense" and be aware of the risks they face.

The campaign is highlighting advice from ambulance service paramedics and doctors who regularly deal with road collisions, while members of the public are also offering their views, advice, experience and opinions.

The campaign is kicking of this week with a reminder to motorists to "buckle up and hang up" before every trip.

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Almost 30 years ago it became compulsory for drivers and passengers to wear seatbelts and nearly 11 years ago it became an offence to use a hand-held mobile phone while driving. 

"The law hasn’t changed yet some people still think it’s acceptable to risk their lives and those of others," a WMAS spokesman said.

Jim Hancox, a paramedic and an aircrew supervisor with Midlands Air Ambulance, said: “We see probably the more serious spectrum of patients on the aircraft as we often get called to the most serious road traffic collisions. We’re fortunate in the West Midlands now to have three major trauma centres where we can take these patients, if they survive the initial accident, to get good care and rehabilitation.

“I’d urge everyone, every time that you get in the car, to take that split second to put your seatbelt on and put your mobile phone out of the way. That phone call, that text message can wait. 

"The simple action of doing these two things could make the difference between going home to your family, or, ending up in a body bag.”

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