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Kent fire crews attending more incidents involving bariatric patients

Sue Nicholson

BBC News

PA Media

Fire crews are helping the ambulance service in Kent by transporting increasing number of obese patients, according to figures obtained by BBC Radio Kent.

In the past three years, Kent Fire and Rescue said it had assisted with more than 560 bariatric patients.

In 2018, firefighters helped to move 263 people, up from 130 the year before.

By 4 October this year, 175 bariatric patients had been assisted, according to official figures.

A South East Coast Ambulance Service NHS Foundation Trust spokesperson said the figures needed to be seen in the context of about 800,000 calls received each year.

"Across our region we treat a variety of patients, many of whom are managing long term and complex health needs.

"We have a duty to ensure we have the resources required to respond to the needs of all our patients including those who are overweight."

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Southampton students eye 'the Brexit election'

Emily Hudson

Political reporter, BBC Radio Solent,

Ask 50 students in a bar about tactical voting in previous elections and you might not get an overwhelming response.

But this is the Brexit election in their eyes.

For some it’s their first chance to show how they feel about leaving the EU. I look for balance, but it’s not really here. All except two don’t want to us to leave.

Many are acutely aware of tactical voting, they tell me about articles they’ve seen in left-wing newspapers advising how to show their discontent with Brexit.

Who is standing in Southampton Itchen and Southampton Test?

They say their friends are sharing tactical vote advice sites on Facebook, whats app and on email.

Here in Southampton Itchen – there were just 31 votes between the Conservative and the Labour candidates last time. The two candidates are standing again and are ready for a re-match.

Many of the students know just how close it was. They will not vote at home in Surrey, Sussex, Wiltshire or the safe Conservative London boroughs.

They will instead chose to visit the ballot box here where they feel their vote could make a real difference.

Although many of the Halls of Residence and student housing areas are in the Southampton Test constituency, there has been a swing towards city centre living for students.

That includes a new block called Capital House just off Houndwell Park – it contains more than 400 rooms. Just one floor of students registering to vote and taking a Brexit stance could decide what happens here.

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