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Ulster 999 ambulance calls diverted to Scotland after fault

Published 14/08/2015

Ambulances at the City Hospital in Belfast
Ambulances at the City Hospital in Belfast

Emergency calls to Northern Ireland's ambulance service are being answered in Scotland because of a technical fault.

BT is diverting 999 callers to dedicated mobile phones within ambulance control in Belfast or to Scottish Ambulance Service staff who relay the call on, a Northern Ireland Ambulance Service (NIAS) spokesman said.

He added: "We are currently working with BT to identify and remedy the fault.

"We are seeking to keep delays to a minimum and would ask for co-operation from the public, requesting that they only contact the ambulance service in the case of real emergencies."

The NIAS has said ambulance control was now working. The system has been re-booted and monitored.

Calls are now being received in the normal way.

Throughout the incident the service received 117 emergency calls.

An NIAS spokesman said: "We are confident at this stage that all calls requiring a 999 response were received and dealt with appropriately.

"BT will continue to monitor the system over the weekend and further diagnostics will be performed to identify reasons for the fault and steps taken to mitigate against its re-occurrence."

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