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Ambulance would have reached dog attack girl in time
PARAMEDICS would have reached a girl bitten in the face by a dog within half an hour, the ambulance service has said.
An ambulance was en route to the girl bitten by a Labrador-type dog outside the Kursaal in Southend on Saturday morning when police took the decision to stand it down and take her to hospital themselves.
But the ambulance service insisted it would have reached the girl, who is reportedly recovering well, within its target time.
An ambulance service spokeswoman said: “We were informed the girl was not in a serious condition with two cuts to her face and we were en route 11 minutes after the call was received – to arrive well within the target response for a non life threatening call, which in this case is 30 minutes – when the police took the decision to stand the ambulance crew down.
“Calls are prioritised in a similar way to A&E departments with an eight minute response time reserved for life-threatened patients so we can get critical help to them in time.”
Initially the ambulance service was considering not sending a crew as the girl’s family might have been able to transport her for medical care themselves, but then designated it serious enough for a response within 30 minutes.
The child needed treatment at Broomfield Hospital in Chelmsford, which has a specialist plastic surgery unit, after the dog bit her face outside Tesco Express in Southchurch Avenue at about 11.35am.
A man identifying himself as the father of the four-year-old said his daughter should recover in a comment on the Echo’s website.
Posting using the username mattyc404 in response to a flood of comments on the story, he said: “Just so everyone knows our little girl is OK and should make a nice recovery so thank you for your wishes.”
The father confirmed the attack took place as the girl’s mother was distracted.
He said: “My other half had not even noticed the dog tied up when she turned to speak to her friend and I think we can all agree that we all do that every day.
“Our kids are taught to ask permission and on the whole knowing how much our daughter loves dogs and animals alike we are always one step ahead when out on the streets just unfortunately this was unforeseen.”
The story about the attack on the Echo’s website sparked more than 80 comments, with many calling for dogs to be muzzled in public.
In response the dad said: “We all like animals in our house and I don’t think dogs should always be muzzled but if a dog is left unattended then maybe they should be even if it’s just a precaution.
“Thanks again for all the nice comments.”
The police were unable to confirm the girl’s condition as the officer in the case is off-duty.