Paramedic’s plea to drivers after dozens caught taking pictures of serious road accident

The WNAA air ambulance in action
The WNAA air ambulance in action

The air ambulance service is urging drivers not to take risks after 80 drivers were caught taking pictures of a road accident.

As previously reported by the Telegraph, police have written to 80 people who were snapped taking photos on the M1 while Warwickshire & Northamptonshire Air Ambulance (WNAA) worked tirelessly alongside other emergency services to free a trapped 21-year-old female lorry driver.

The casualty had been severely injured and was trapped in her lorry for more than four hours after a road accident in June this year.

A WNAA paramedic stayed in the cab of the lorry with the casualty, treating and reassuring her while the fire service worked to free her.

A total of 80 people received letters from Northamptonshire Police after officers set up a camera to record those taking photos of the accident while the lorry driver was trapped and fighting for her life.

Using a mobile phone while driving is illegal, but it is also highly dangerous and any distractions while driving can lead to serious and potentially fatal accidents.

The Air Ambulance Service (TAAS), which is the umbrella organisation for WNAA, Derbyshire, Leicestershire & Rutland Air Ambulance and The Children’s Air Ambulance, attends an average of 61 road traffic accidents every month – more than two a day.

They have attended more than 500 accidents so far in 2012.

WNAA paramedic Philippa Gibbs, who attended the incident on the M1, said: “Unfortunately road accidents by nature often lead to serious, life-changing injuries as well as fatalities.

“We really would urge drivers to take care while out driving and not to do anything to risk causing an accident and endangering their or another person’s life.”

Summer is a busy time for both WNAA and DLRAA, with extended daylight hours and summer holidays meaning that more people are out and about which can potentially lead to more road accidents, in turn putting more pressure on the charity, which receives no Government or National Lottery funding.

Each rescue mission costs approximately £1,400 and all of their rescue missions are funded entirely by public donations.

They have launched an urgent appeal in order to raise more donations to help keep their life-saving service in the sky during this busy period.

Philippa said: “We rely on the generosity of members of the public to help fund our valuable life-saving service.

“But as well as urging people to donate, we’d really urge people to stay safe on the roads in order to help minimise the risk of needing our service.”

If you would like to make a donation to TAAS, visit or call 08454 130999.

Click here to see the previous story about drivers taking pictures of the accident on the M1