Tees

Fall pensioner, 95, in six-hour ambulance wait

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Media captionFall pensioner, 95, waits six hours for ambulance

A 95-year-old man who fell and broke his hip had to wait six hours for an ambulance.

Bob Craig fell in his Middlesbrough flat at 17:30 GMT on Monday and lay on his bathroom floor until after midnight.

Mr Craig's son, Nigel, recorded a video of the "horrible" incident and posted it on Facebook.

The North East Ambulance Service (NEAS) apologised for the delay and blamed "high demand" for its services.

Nigel Craig said: "It was horrible to see and hear. He was crying out.

"The ambulance and paramedics were fantastic when they got here. It was just the wait. For me, it shouldn't have happened.

"I don't know if there's anyone to blame or whether they just had a lot of emergencies that night.

"But being told he's not being treated as an emergency when I'm watching him crying out and when he's 95 and probably suffered a break, it was hard to accept."

Image caption Nigel Craig said his father was "crying out"

Mr Craig was taken to James Cook University Hospital, in Middlesbrough, where he had surgery to treat a broken hip.

Paul Liversidge, NEAS chief operating officer, said: "We would like to apologise for the delay experienced by this patient and the distress this must have caused him and his family.

"During the time of Mr Craig's wait, we were dealing with more than 200 life-threatening calls.

"At times of such high demand, unfortunately those patients whose lives are not immediately at risk can experience longer waits than we would like."

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