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5 June 2014, 06:00
The latest brand-new ambulances for the East of England Ambulance service have started service.
120 new vehicles announced earlier this year by the East of England Ambulance Trust (EEAST) - are now on the road.
The planned completion of the roll-out was the end of June, and EEAST Chief Executive Dr Anthony Marsh said: "I'm delighted that these ambulances have now been delivered across the region; our staff have worked incredibly hard in order to make this happen so quickly. But this is just the beginning and as the fleet replacement programme continues this year, we will have no vehicle older than five years by spring next year.
We're also working hard to achieve my other key priorities which include recruiting 400 new paramedics and up-skilling our emergency care assistants and emergency medical technicians. We know we have a lot of work to do in order to improve the service, but this is a great sign that we are on the right track."
Assistant General Manager Phil Parr welcomed the arrival of the latest vehicles: "The ambulances are a great addition to the fleet and we're really pleased that the new Chief Executive has made this a priority. It's important that we not only have as many ambulances on the road as possible, but also that they are in good working condition so that they are both reliable and the best environment in which to treat our patients."
The Trust has also put in a replacement programme of 68 rapid response cars with brand new "Skoda Scouts".
EEAST have told Heart, those vehicles are due to all be on the road by the end of this month.