Fears after alarm system fault

By a County Press reporter

Published on Friday, February 01, 2013 - 16:19


UPDATED 16:20*

AN EMERGENCY alarm system used by thousands of vulenerable people on the Isle of Wight and around the country has gone down this morning (Friday).

The problem has prompted the Isle of Wight Council to ask residents to be extra vigilent about the wellbeing of friends, family and neighbours who use the pendant system, operated on the Isle of Wight by Wightcare.

A council spokesman said: "The fault may affect up to 2,000 vulnerable residents on the Island who have the emergency call pendants operated through Wightcare.

"The Isle of Wight Council is contacting those users who it knows are particularly vulnerable by telephone to inform them of the fault.

"Additional visits will be made by the Wightcare team when calls are not answered.

"The council is also contacting homecare agencies and organisations that visit vulnerable residents asking them to be extra vigilant and has also agreed to fund the extra check on the most vulnerable clients."

The council appealed to concerned Islanders to check on anyone who may be affected.

Mark Howell, Isle of Wight Council head of commissioning for community wellbeing and social care, said: "This unfortunate interruption of the service is a national issue but naturally our concern is for those who use it on the Island, many of who are very vulnerable.

"Hopefully the fault will be repaired quickly but in the meantime we are taking steps to protect these vulnerable residents but we would also call on the wider community to assist us as well.

"We would appeal to anyone who knows a pendant user to keep an extra vigilant watch over them until the national problem with the pendant communication is fixed."

Anyone with queries or concern can contact the Wightcare Service on 01983 821105.

*At 4.12pm the Isle of Wight Council advised that the fault had been repaired and the service restored.


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