CAPE TOWN – A paramedic crew from the Western Cape Government Health Emergency Medical Service (EMS) was ambushed, assaulted and robbed while attending to a patient in the Happy Valley informal settlement in Blackheath on Monday.
“Four men carrying knives and broken bottles forced their way into an EMS ambulance as the crew was busy loading a patient. The attackers demanded the crew’s personal valuables, including wallets, mobile phones and handbags after which they stabbed the female paramedic with a broken bottle,” the province’s Emergency Medical and Forensic Pathology Services EMS spokesman, Robert Daniels, said.
“The other paramedic was threatened with a knife, but fortunately not harmed. Further to this the attackers damaged the EMS ambulance by ripping the mobile data terminal from the vehicle’s dashboard, effectively rendering the vehicle out of service for several weeks.”
Daniels said the crew members received medical attention and were offered trauma counselling after the attack. They are currently off-duty.
“This attack will not diminish our commitment to continue providing emergency medical care, but the public should note that the safety of our emergency care workers throughout the department is our first priority. An attack on an EMS ambulance and crew is an attack on your own community,” Daniels said.