Scots councils pay for weather forecast

By Cara Sulieman

THREE SCOTS councils are shelling out £90,000 for someone to predict the weather.

Falkirk, Stirling and Clackmannanshire Councils are paying the Met Office to provide them with a detailed forecast so they can decide how much grit is needed for roads in their area.

It comes after the country was brought to a standstill last winter when local authorities across Scotland ran out of salt.

But motoring organisations say they need to prepare for a bad winter no matter what the forecast says to avoid a repeat of last year’s chaos.

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Number of ‘forced adoptions’ rocket as more children taken into care

More children than ever are being taken into care

By Cara Sulieman

THE NUMBER of parents having their children taken off them and put up for adoption has rocketed in the last three years.

The number of cases where social services have stepped in and forced adoption have doubled in the past three years and a record number of kids have been taken into care.

Figures obtained from Scotland’s councils under the Freedom of Information laws reveal that 203 children were put up for adoption by social workers last year.

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Pensioner left out in cold by ambulance

Betty Henry with her husband John at a wedding last year.

By Cara Sulieman

A PENSIONER was left in the freezing cold waiting for an ambulance after tripping and breaking her ankle, despite passer bys making SIX 999 calls.

It was over an hour before help finally arrived for 75-year-old Betty Henry, who had just got off the bus before tripping on a pothole on Clermiston Road in Edinburgh.

Members of the public who rushed to her aid were repeatedly told by the ambulance that it was not “an emergency”, despite the fact that the usually active pensioner could not move and started to shake in the cold.

Meanwhile, Mrs Henry’s daughter Barbara Balfour, was waiting to hear which hospital her mum would be taken to before setting off from her Haddington home.

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RAF rescues patient after ambulances stuck in snow

By Rory Reynolds

BRAVE RAF servicemen risked treacherous conditions to rescue a patient after ambulance crews became trapped in heavy snow.

The Scottish Ambulance Service sent two vehicles to ensure they reached the 63-year-old woman, who suffered a suspected heart attack at her house in Peebles, but were unable to use either roads leading from her rural home after heavy snow fell on the area.

An RAF helicopter flew up from the north of England to airlift the woman while ambulance crews worked to stabilise her.

Once the Sea King landed it had to wait before it could take off again as conditions worsened in the south of Scotland.

A spokesman for RAF Search and Rescue said: “An RAF helicopter was requested to assist the ambulance service with a 63-year-old woman suffering from a suspected heart-attack. Continue reading

Group petition for law to stop future Brandon Muir cases

By Cara Sulieman

A GROUP set up in memory of Brandon Muir are to have their child protection petition heard before a committee of the Scottish Parliament.

Calling on the government to set up a Safe Guardian scheme, they hope that children who are suffering from suspected abuse can stay with a safe family member while social services investigate.

RealJustice4Brandon claim that Brandon’s life might have been saved if he had been able to stay with his grandparents instead of returning to his mother’s house.

The tragic tot from Dundee died from a ruptured intestine just hours after his mother’s boyfriend, Robert Cunningham, assaulted him.

Allan Petrie from the campaign group hopes that the petition – which will be heard by the Public Petitions Committee on December 1 – will bring in a law to help protect Scotland’s children.

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Push bike ambulance

Paramedics 7

By Cara Sulieman

THE AMBULANCE service has launched its new vehicle for a quicker response to emergencies – a push bike.

The bikes will be used by paramedics in Edinburgh and the Lothians to help them get through crowds more easily.

Launched at this year’s Royal Highland show, the cycles will only be used at crowded events like the Fringe Festival to allow the ambulance service to carry out minor treatment.

Two bikes have been kitted out in bright ambulance colours and logos and come full equipped to deal with emergencies.

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