[an error occurred while processing this directive]
BBC News
watch One-Minute World News
Last Updated: Thursday, 23 March 2006, 20:23 GMT
London bombs response 'too slow'
Paul Dadge helping a survivor of the 7 July bombings
Paul Dadge helped victims at Edgware Road
The ex-fireman who was pictured helping survivors of the 7 July London bombings has criticised the ambulance service for its response to the attacks.

Paul Dadge, who was at Edgware Road, said the London Ambulance Service (LAS) was "slow to respond".

He spoke at a London Assembly 7 July review hearing which is looking at what lessons can be learnt from the attacks.

Another survivor called for aircraft style lighting, first aid kits and a reintroduction of guards on trains.

Mr Dadge told the committee: "There was a severe lack of medical supplies and equipment.

London Ambulance Service was slow to respond in numbers and was eventually backed up by St John's and the Red Cross
Paul Dadge
"London Ambulance Service was slow to respond in numbers and was eventually backed up by St John's and the Red Cross."

Martin Flaherty of LAS said the events of 7 July were "unprecedented" but did accept there were some delays in replenishing supplies and equipment .

"We are looking at how to speed this process up to enable us to support multiple incident sites more effectively in future," he said.

A common criticism made of London Underground (LU) and the emergency services was poor information being given to victims on the day.

Kirsty, who was caught up at King's Cross, said: "There was a complete lack of guidance.

"I went around for a while not really knowing what to do. I wasn't contacted by anyone despite giving the officer my phone number."

This proved problematic when she submitted a compensation claim. She said: "Police had no record of my involvement."

Biological warfare attack

Michael, told how he escaped from a bombed train by walking down the track at Aldgate.

He told the committee: "I walked up on to the platform and asked the first group of firemen why they weren't down there - there's people dying down there - and they wouldn't look at me.

During another hearing it emerged that LU's radio systems did not work properly and it had to rely on workers running into tunnels to find out what was going on.

If John Howard can make it from Canberra then perhaps his equivalent might have made it across the river to St Thomas's in Lambeth
Joe
Survivors also revealed they received little reassurance that they had not been the victims of a biological warfare attack.

Ben, who was a victim of the Edgware Road attack, said: "There was a very real concern that the smoke we were breathing in was part of a biological or chemical attack."

When he asked a police officer if tests were available, he was told to go home and watch the television news.

Joe, whose Australian wife survived the King's Cross blast, contrasted the responses of the British and Australian governments.

Australian Prime Minister John Howard visited his wife in hospital.

He said: "If John Howard can make it from Canberra then perhaps his equivalent might have made it across the river to St Thomas's in Lambeth."

The four bombs left 52 people dead in July last year. Hundreds of people were also injured in the attacks on three Tube trains and a bus.

The 7 July Review Committee, which heard from 13 survivors on Thursday, is expected to reveal its findings at the end of May.




BBC NEWS: VIDEO AND AUDIO
Watch more from the review hearing



SEE ALSO:
Policeman recalls 7 July horror
02 Dec 05 |  London
Remembering the panic of 7 July
03 Nov 05 |  London


RELATED INTERNET LINKS:
The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites


PRODUCTS AND SERVICES

Americas Africa Europe Middle East South Asia Asia Pacific