Question to First Minister regarding Cardiff tragedy

Mark asked a supplementary question during First Minister’s Questions


Dydd Mawrth, 23 Hydref 2012
Tuesday, 23 October 2012


Mark Drakeford: The health impacts of the events in Cardiff on Friday afternoon will be profound and long lasting. Thank you for putting on record the immediate concerns of the Welsh Government for those who were caught up in them. Do you agree that, over the weeks and months to come, the contribution of core services in schools, social services, and housing will be vital in assisting individuals, families, and whole communities in Cardiff to deal with the health impacts of what has taken place?


 The First Minister: I thank the Member for raising this issue. I am sure that we were all deeply shocked by the events that took place in Cardiff over the course of the end of last week, and, indeed, in Prestatyn. I know that Ann Jones, Julie Morgan, and Mark Drakeford have made their views known on these issues and have offered their condolences to the families involved. This was an exceptionally traumatic series of incidents, and, as a Government, we want to offer our deep condolences to those who have been affected, and of course to offer any help that we can for the future. There is a limit to what I can say, given that there are ongoing criminal proceedings. Nevertheless, I wish to put on record my thanks to all the emergency services that were involved for their response, and, indeed, to the wider community for its response and the support that it gave to the families who were affected.


Julie Morgan: The day after the incident in Cardiff last week, to which Mark Drakeford referred, I was able to visit the accident and emergency unit in the Heath hospital in Cardiff North, where all the victims had been taken. Will the First Minister join me in congratulating all the staff at the unit, including the ambulance staff, on the way in which they responded to what was a very traumatic situation? They implemented, for the first time on such a large scale, an emergency protocol in which all the trauma equipment was brought to the A&E department, which was closed to any other admissions.


The First Minister: Yes, I will. I praise, once again, the fantastic efforts of all the emergency services that were involved not just in the incident in Cardiff, but also in Prestatyn. It is impossible to predict an incident such as this, although I seem to recall a similar incident in Cardiff in the late 1980s and early 1990s. It is very difficult to rationalise an incident such as this, but I have no doubt that the work that was carried out by all the emergency services helped to make a very difficult and dangerous position better, and to mitigate the effects of what happened that day. I am more than happy, as I am sure all Members are, to thank the emergency services for all the work that they have done.