Boy died after satnav fault delays ambulance
Could they not have used a map, asks mum
A child died after a faulty satnav caused an ambulance to arrive late, a coroner heard last week.
Nine-year-old Corey Seymour suffered heart failure last September following an asthma attack at home. An ambulance took 24 minutes to arrive, despite an eight-minute target response time.
West Midlands Ambulance Service has since admitted problems with a satnav, prompting the lad's mother, who was pregnant with her ninth child at the time, to demand an inquiry.
“How can highly trained medical professionals be so reliant on satnav? Could they not have used a map?" mum Melanie Carver, 40, asked.
A coroner adjourned the inquest into Corey’s death last Wednesday to await further information.
Meanwhile, the West Midlands Ambulance Service says it did everything it could despite the technology glitch and insisted it didn't rely solely on satnavs for navigation.
“A paramedic in a rapid response vehicle and an ambulance were automatically dispatched. By the time the paramedic and GP assessed and treated the patient, the ambulance had arrived. We offer our condolences to the family,” said a spokesman.
Faulty satnavs have been blamed for over £200m worth of damages over the last year. While dependence on our roadmap advisers appears to be on the rise, competition from smartphones means the ageing technology could run out of breath and seek new direction, perhaps in the form of satnav-based insurance assessments. ®
How many people (let's even throw children in to raise the shock value) have died over the decades when drivers were relying on maps?
I note nothing in the story appears to indicate either if the ambulance got there after the kid died, or that the delay caused the death.
I see only a mother looking for someone, or something, to blame.
Re: Non story
On the news next week:
Satnavs made legally compulsory on all emergency service vehicles at great expense (plus backhanders) to "reassure the public" and "provide a better service".
Seriously - think what would have happened WITHOUT satnav to so many people over the last decade or so. It still doesn't mean it should be compulsory, or that they should totally ignore GPS technology. But a failure of a technology like that is not something you can predict or reasonably guard against.
The ambulance got there. Slightly delayed, but it got there. I bet the driver was cursing the satnav just as much as the mother. But, as the article points out, there were ALREADY trained, qualified, emergency-response, medical people on the scene. The ambulance coming or not at that exact moment is unlikely to be the major factor in any death and, if it was, similarly risking would be a traffic jam, or a puncture, or an engine failure, or the driver fainting, or, or, or...
I can understand the mother being upset about it, but I don't think it deserves the press it's got. What next? A ten-billion-pound constant treatment could have given my son one minute longer alive, so we have to make it compulsory in every doctor's surgery and have backup units standing by at all times? No.
The ambulance crew did their job and got to the place. Maybe not as fast as was theoretically possible, but for sure as damn fast as they were able to, through no fault of their own (or that of the ambulance service). I imagine the press is killing *the crew* right now, more than anyone else.
Re: Did the delay cause the death?
The paramedic arrive in less than eight minutes according to the original Daily Mail version of the story.
There was also a GP present before the ambulance arrived, which seems odd to me. It doesn't seem to me that the delay made any difference. Rapid Response vehicles are used as they can reach the scene faster than a larger vehicle, and are well-equipped.