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Environmental watchdog to investigate Cumbernauld ambulance station dust problems

Written by Scott Campbell.
 
 
 
 
 
Published at 09:38 GMT on Thursday, July 11th, 2013.

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Paramedics have suffered breathing problems. Image is copyright of Scottish Ambulance Service.

STAFF at the Cumbernauld Scottish Ambulance Service station have been falling ill lately; a phenomena which has seen the Scottish environmental watchdog get involved.

The Ambulance Service’s £330,000 station in the Lenziemill area of Cumbernauld opened on January 18th, 2012, and was built to ensure better services and response times for patients across the area.

This week, however, the Scottish Environmental Protection Agency (SEPA) has been called in to monitor dust levels at the station after it immerged that paramedics at the depot have been suffering breathing problems since the site opened, last year.

A source at the station told the Herald: "We believe the problem is caused by dust levels. One colleague has left because the doctor told him that his health would be affected if he stayed. Now another member of staff is on sick leave."

The station is home to 43 staff and houses two emergency ambulances and a paramedic response unit, with the station itself close to two industrial plants, including a recycling facility.

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Jamie Hepburn, SNP MSP for Cumbernauld and Kilsyth, said: "I welcome the fact that SEPA are responding to the concerns expressed by Scottish Ambulance Service staff about the impact on them by the adjacent recycling facility.

"Clearly we need recycling facilities of this type, but it is important that they are located sensibly."

A Scottish Ambulance Service spokesman said: "The welfare of our employees is paramount and following concerns raised by staff we have asked SEPA to look into the dust levels in the area which may be associated with neighbouring businesses.

"We will await the outcome of that process before determining the most appropriate course of action."

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