'We can’t thank them enough': Harry Dunn's family praise paramedics after meeting over ambulance response to fatal crash

Harry Dunn's family praised paramedics after a meeting with ambulance service bosses about how they responded to the fatal crash in south Northamptonshire.

Thursday, 7th November 2019, 12:44 pm
Harry Dunn

It took 41 minutes for a doctor to arrive at the scene of the accident outside Croughton in August, which has sparked an international war of words, and an ambulance arrived two minutes later.

The family posted on the Justice4Harry Facebook page that they were satisfied after the 'constructive' meeting with East Midlands Ambulance Service (EMAS) yesterday (Wednesday, November 6).

"We have nothing but admiration for all the extremely hard work they [EMAS] carried out on Harry on the side of the road on August 27," the post says.

(L-R) Charlotte Charles, Radd Seiger and Tim Dunn. Photo: Getty Images

"They literally brought the hospital to Harry and for that we can’t thank them enough."

Harry, 19, died in hospital after his motorcycle crashed with a car being driven on the wrong side of the road by Anne Sacoolas, an American who was living at RAF Croughton.

His family has been fighting for answers after she claimed diplomatic immunity and left the UK for the US, with their campaign including a meeting with President Donald Trump.

On the night of the crash, EMAS was called at 8.25pm to a report of a crash on the B4031 near Croughton.

Harry was reported to be conscious and breathing, and the call was recorded as a 'category two' call - national standards state such calls should be responded to at least nine out of 10 times before 40 minutes.

Despite the nearest available resource being sent within two minutes of the call, a doctor in a car arrived in 41 minutes and the ambulance arrived in 43 minutes.

Harry received significant treatment on scene from highly skilled clinicians before being taken by to the nearest major trauma centre at the John Radcliffe Hospital in Oxford, where he died.

Family spokesman Radd Seiger said: "The parents are incredibly grateful to all the staff who worked tirelessly to save Harry’s life that night, sadly in vain.

"They know that EMAS crews and staff work hard every day on the frontline in a challenging environment and they have nothing but respect and admiration for them."

While the family believes the crash should have been a 'category one' due to the seriousness of Harry's injuries, they accept he could not have been saved even if they arrived in seven minutes.

Mr Seiger was complimentary of EMAS chief executive Richard Henderson and director of quality Nichola Bramhall, saying it was the first time they have had 'positive or constructive dialogue with any agency involved in Harry’s case'.

The family has been critical of Northamptonshire Police's handling of the case, as well as that of the British and American governments.

They are meeting Northamptonshire Police, Fire and Crime Commissioner Stephen Mold about the force's involvement today (Thursday).

Mr Henderson said: “I wanted to take the opportunity to hear from the family at this stage, whilst recognising the complexities and sensitivities of ongoing external legal investigations.

“I understand that this is a very difficult time for the family and I therefore appreciate the time I had with them.

“In due course there will be a coroner’s inquest into the death of Harry Dunn and EMAS will cooperate fully with that inquiry.

“I have committed to discuss the issues arising with local health leaders in Northamptonshire together with Harry’s parents.”