Inquiry calls into ambulance delay after fatal Heston fire

Hounslow flat fire A man and a woman who died following a fire at a building in Heston, west London

Related Stories

An MP has called on the health secretary to launch an inquiry into how ambulance services in London are able to cope with emergencies.

Feltham and Heston MP Seema Malhotra called on Jeremy Hunt to launch an inquiry after a fatal west London fire.

A man and a woman died following a fire at a building in Heston on 10 July.

London Ambulance Service said the emergency call it received from the police was "in error" treated as "a lower priority".

The Department for Health said: "We have received the letter and will respond shortly."

'Hot weather'

Three people jumped from the Church Road building after a fire broke out in the early hours.

Start Quote

The incident happened on a very busy night and we are sorry that we were unable to respond sooner”

End Quote London Ambulance Service

One of them was 44-year-old Shamshad Molohoo, of Central Parade, Heston. She died from head and chest trauma.

The body of the second victim, Ali Choudhary, 27, also of Central Parade, was found inside the building. He died from the effects of inhaling fumes.

Following the fire, Labour MP Ms Malhotra wrote to London ambulance chief Ann Radmore and the health secretary asking them to investigate claims "from those who witnessed the incident that the ambulance took over 15 minutes to arrive".

In her response Ms Radmore explained the ambulance service had faced "an increase in demand arising from the hot weather".

She also said the call received was "in error" treated as "a lower priority".

'Not good enough'

Ms Radmore said it took 13 minutes for an ambulance to be on the scene.

Ms Malhotra said: "The response from the London Ambulance Service on that fatal early morning simply was not good enough.

"We know that cuts to their funding has meant that they are over-stretched and under-staffed.

"There are real concerns that less experienced staff are given too much responsibility - with real risks to London's safety."

A London Ambulance Service spokeswoman said: "We sent four ambulance crews, three duty officers, our hazardous area response team and staff from London's Air Ambulance to the scene, with the first of our staff arriving in 13 minutes.

"The incident happened on a very busy night and we are sorry that we were unable to respond sooner.

"We have received nearly £15m investment this year to help us recruit 240 additional frontline staff to increase ambulance cover and improve the care we provide to patients."

More on This Story

Related Stories

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external Internet sites

BBC London

Weather

London

20 °C 11 °C

BBC Local Live

  1.  
    18 rescued in Battersea fire 08:50:

    Eighteen people were rescued by firefighters after a blaze broke out in a tower block in south London.

    18 rescued in Battersea fire

    The Met said 10 people had been treated for minor injuries, while six were taken to hospital for treatment after 80 firefighters and 12 fire engines were sent to the fourth floor of the high-rise block in Battersea at around 16:00 yesterday.

     
  2.  
    On air 08:41: Vanessa Feltz Presenter, BBC London 94.9

    On BBC London 94.9 from 09:00, researchers in London say only half of 5-year-olds have reached a good level of development by the time they start school, and in some parts of the country it's barely a quarter - how can we make that better?

     
  3.  
    Top headlines
     
  4.  
    Controversial show opens 08:30:

    A controversial exhibition which has been branded as racist by some critics opens at the Barbican today.

    Exhibit B by Brett Bailey features live performers including black men and women shackled and caged.

    Some have denounced it as a detrimental portrayal of black people but the Barbican's defended it as an exploration of black history.

     
  5.  
    Met investigated 08:20:

    A human rights watchdog is to investigate the Met Police after it emerged references to discrimination were deleted from internal reports.

    Carol Howard

    The inquiry by the Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC) comes after PC Carol Howard won a discrimination case against the force.

     
  6.  
    Road problems 08:10: Louise Pepper Journalist, BBC London

    At Clapham Junction, St John's Hill is closed at Falcon Road (by the station) due to a collision leading delays around the area.

    On the A13, a collision westbound after Prince Regent Lane has added to morning delays all the way in from Rainham.

    For the latest information go to our travel page or on Twitter @BBCLondonTravel.

     
  7.  
    Chilly start 08:04:

    After a chilly start any patchy mist and fog will clear, leaving sunny spells. This afternoon cloud will increase, perhaps bringing some rain later.

    It will feel pleasantly warm in the light winds, with temperatures a little above average for the time of year.

    Highs of 20C (68F)

     
  8.  
    08:00: Matthew Bell BBC News, London

    Good morning, I'll be bringing you all the latest news, sport, travel and weather from London today for BBC Local Live.

    You can also send your news, pictures and comments to london.locallive@bbc.co.uk.

     

Features

  • Peaky Blinders publicity shotBrum do

    Why is the Birmingham accent so difficult to mimic?


  • Oliver CromwellA brief history

    The 900 year story behind the creation of a UK parliament


  • Image of Ankor Wat using lidarJungle Atlantis

    How lasers have revealed an ancient city beneath the forest


  • TheatreBard taste? Watch

    Are trailer videos on social media spoiling theatre?


BBC © 2014 The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read more.

This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.