FIRE crews were forced to break down the back door of a home in Gilmerton after an elderly resident fell and became trapped behind her front door with a broken hip as emergency services struggled to cope with a flurry of calls.
May Paterson, 86, was comforted by firefighters as she waited almost two hours for an ambulance after being found by a concerned neighbour when she failed to answer the door of the property in Hyvots Court at around 9am on Thursday.
The woman alerted emergency services after hearing Mrs Paterson in pain as she knocked on the door and became concerned for her welfare.
Firefighters were eventually able to force their way in through a back entrance, but an ambulance only responded after they called 999.
The neighbour said: “It is disgraceful that it took firefighters to make the call that finally brought the ambulance crews to May. I understand they must be extremely busy at this time of year, but this was a vulnerable old woman who was in a lot of discomfort. The firefighters were fantastic with May and helped to keep her warm and in a relatively calm state considering, but it was shocking that she had to lie there for that length of time.”
A Scottish Fire and Rescue Service spokesman said: “SFRS was alerted at 8.57am on December 14 to reports of a member of the public requiring assistance at Hyvot Court. Operations mobilised one appliance and firefighters assisted our emergency service partners.”