Sussex volunteers evacuate flood victims

St John Ambulance 4x4 in flooded town

Volunteers in Sussex were called into action to evacuate patients from a nursing home that was flooded when a nearby river burst its banks.

Support was requested at 7pm on Saturday 13 December after South East Coast Ambulance service were unable to assist.

Seven ambulances were mobilised within an hour, with a further five joining throughout the evening. St John Ambulance volunteers co-ordinated the rescue effort with Crawley Borough Council and the West Sussex Fire and Rescue Service.

We stood the last crews down at 3.30am on Sunday morning, a long night which was very testing, but in which we successfully delivered first class care.

Dan May
St John Ambulance Assistant Commissioner Operations, Sussex

The patients, all elderly dementia patients, had to be carried from the building, many by boat and we transferred them to a number of locations in the West Sussex area.

Dan May, Assistant Commissioner Operations, St John Ambulance Sussex, said: 'I am incredibly grateful to the 12 crews and officers that turned out on a cold and wet Saturday night - thank you most sincerely for your hard work, good humour and support. We stood the last crews down at 3.30am on Sunday morning, a long night which was very testing, but in which we successfully delivered first class care.'