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Ambulance service bosses appeal for information after spate of thefts at stations across Kent

Life-saving equipment has been stolen from ambulance stations in a move which may have cost lives.

The callous criminals even left emergency vehicles out of action in a spate of break-ins.

Ambulance service bosses are now appealing for information after the equipment was stolen from stations across the county.

Queenborough Ambulance Station. Picture: John Westhrop
Queenborough Ambulance Station. Picture: John Westhrop

The most recent break-ins took place this week at Sheppey and Herne Bay ambulance stations.

At the Sheppey station, in Queenborough, window bars were forced and life-saving equipment was stolen from locked vehicles after their windows were smashed.

Three vehicles were left unusable because they had to be repaired.

It happened at some point after 10pm on Tuesday.

At Herne Bay, a number of vehicles had their windows smashed and two Community First Responder bags, training equipment and a defibrillator were stolen between 4pm on Tuesday and 7am on Wednesday.

On Sunday, at around 11pm, a hole was cut through a metal fence to gain entry to the car park at the Ashford Make Ready Centre.

Equipment was taken from an ambulance but was left behind when the thieves were chased off the premises.

Paramedics leaving Queenborough Ambulance Station on Main Road. Picture: John Westhrop
Paramedics leaving Queenborough Ambulance Station on Main Road. Picture: John Westhrop

Two ambulances were also vandalised in the early hours of March 31 at the Thanet Make Ready Centre, leaving them inoperable while they were repaired.

And, on May 24, a support vehicle was stolen and later found abandoned by police with unrepairable damage.

Chris Stamp, regional operations manager for the South East Coast Ambulance Service, said: "We are working closely with police on these incidents and would urge anyone with any information whatsoever to come forward.

"Those responsible need to know the seriousness of their actions which, undoubtedly, have put lives at risk.

"They have targeted vital pieces of life-saving equipment which have no sell-on value.

"By damaging vehicles, they have also placed even greater pressure on our resources which are already stretched in responding to high levels of demand."

Anyone with information should call police on 01843 222289, quoting crime reference ZY/24921/17.

To remain anonymous, contact Kent Crimestoppers on 0800 555111.

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