Fire service volunteers transport isolated people to Valleys’ vaccination centres
Anthony Lewis, local democracy reporter
The fire service is helping people in the South Wales Valleys get to their coronavirus vaccination appointments.
South Wales Fire and Rescue Service has teamed up with Age Connects Morgannwg and Cwm Taf Morgannwg Health Board to transport isolated people in Bridgend, Merthyr Tydfil and Rhondda Cynon Taf to their vaccinations.
Since last week two service vehicles are being used to drive those without access to transport to the community vaccination centres in a contact-free service.
Volunteers will be required to wear masks throughout the journey and have been supplied with safety packs to sanitise the vehicles between journeys to keep themselves and their passengers safe.
Additional volunteer roles will be supported by members of staff across the service to fulfil duties such as reception, administration and meeting and greeting people for their appointments across Rhondda Cynon Taf.
It is expected that the fire service’s support will increase over the next few weeks in line with the Welsh Government’s easing of restrictions.
The initial request for support from the service was for a three month period starting in mid-March.
The fire service said in a statement announcing the scheme: “The health and safety of those assisting is paramount and they will now be programmed to receive their Covid-19 vaccinations.
“This support will be delivered in the existing spirit of partnership and collaboration shared across the emergency service family in Wales. Together we are united in our dedication to be there for our communities and keep the people we serve safe.”