Obese patients 'prompt ambulance fleet revamp'
An increase in obese patients means ambulance bosses are having to revamp their fleets to cope, the BBC has learned.
Every service in the UK has started buying specialist equipment, data from freedom of information requests show.
This includes wider stretchers, more lifting gear and reinforcing existing vehicles.
Many have also bought specialist "bariatric" ambulances - costing up to £90,000 each - to ferry the most obese.
These are designed so that double-width trolley stretchers for patients up to 50 stone (318kg) can be accommodated.
Dominic Hughes reports.
03 Feb 2011