Image: Wikimedia Commons / Jackofhearts101

Plymouth University students volunteer for safeguarding on nights out

Students are being trained in first aid to create an emergency response team patrolling the streets of Plymouth’s city centre nightspots.

The students’ early intervention aims to lift the burden of unnecessary 999 calls and pressure on emergency services, like police and ambulances.

The Plymouth Night Patrol units carry medical equipment for emergencies, including tourniquets, burns and trauma dressings, a defibrillator, and doses of naloxone (a drug used to treat patients in cases of opioid overdose).

According to their website, “Volunteering with Plymouth Night Patrol is an experience unlike that of any other student group – an opportunity to directly save lives and be there when vulnerable people have nowhere else to turn.”

The students put quite a big burden at night on the emergency services

– David Martin, the founder of Plymouth Night Patrol

Created in 2019 with the support of the Students’ Union, the team has helped with 152 incidents in this term alone.

David Martin, the founder of Plymouth Night Patrol, said: “The students put quite a big burden at night on the emergency services.

“If we can relieve that pressure – even just a little bit – then it’s got to help out in the big picture and get those ambulances to the people who are really [in] life-threatening [situations].”

He added: “Quite a lot of what we do is dealing with drunk people, making sure they’re safe and looked after and cared for.”

Ch Supt Matt Longman, of Devon and Cornwall Police stated: “What started out as a good idea, has become a really well resourced and well trained group of people.

“They really are doing some great work, they really are keeping people safe … I see us working alongside them more and more.”

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