Belfast Telegraph

Man arrested after paramedic allegedly bitten in Ballycastle

A paramedic was allegedly bitten by a patient in Ballycastle in the early hours of Thursday morning.

An ambulance was called to a house following reports of a man being unconscious. When the crew arrived the man allegedly became aggressive and bit the paramedic.

The PSNI was called to the scene and an 18-year-old man was taken into custody.

The paramedic was later assessed at Causeway Hospital and was unable to continue with the remainder of the shift.

The PSNI said: "Shortly after 1.45am police received a report that a man had assaulted Northern Ireland Ambulance Service (NIAS) staff.

"An 18-year-old male was arrested on suspicion of disorderly behaviour, assault and assault on police following an incident in Ballycastle during the early hours of this morning, Thursday 03 March.

" The male was later released on police bail pending further enquiries."

A statement from the ambulance service said: "This incident once again highlights the potential dangers faced by our crews when attending calls.

"The paramedic has more than 20 years’ service, dedicated to the care of those who need our help.  It is disgraceful that we have witnessed yet another incident of this type.

"When the member of staff was unable to continue with the rest of his shift, Ballycastle was left without cover in the town, relying on the neighbouring stations of Ballymoney and Coleraine to be available to respond to calls from the town.

"This also has the potential to impact on the staff from those other stations as they may have to travel longer distances at high speed to respond to Category A patients."

The statement added: "We recognise that we have the support of the vast majority of the public in attempting to consign these attacks to history but if people refuse to listen, we would like to see custodial sentences as a deterrent."

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