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London Fire Brigade's 12 days of Christmas

London Fire Brigade want to highlight time-wasting and non-emergency calls Credit: David Jensen/EMPICS Entertainment

A kitten with its head stuck in a bongo drum, a French man asking to translate a word and a swan swimming on a frozen lake are just three of the weird examples highlighted by the London Fire Brigade in a bid to drive down non-emergency calls and time-wasting.

Throughout the twelve days of Christmas the Brigade's twitter account will be sending out messages reminding people only to dial 999 in a genuine emergency.

In the past five years LFB has received 8,600 hoax calls, 1,543 instances of people stuck in everyday objects like toilet seats or furniture, and 2,868 calls to rescue animals. In these instances the London Fire Brigade says the RSPCA should be called instead.

The tweets will come with the hashtag #12DaysXmas, but despite the festive feel Director of Operations, Dave Brown said there was a serious reason behind the bizarre stories: "We are regularly called to deal with a lot of incidents which could be avoided. We want everyone to have a good Christmas, but remember that silly pranks and time wasting calls cost us time, money and resources."

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London Air Ambulance draws first blood in fight to save lives

London's Air-Ambulance became Britain's first emergency service to carry blood whenever they're called to an accident. Experience has shown that when soldiers have been seriously injured in battle, an immediate blood transfusion can increase their chances of survival.

Phil Bayles reports now on how the same pricinple will now be applied around the capital.

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London's air ambulances to carry blood

London air ambulances will now carry blood to the scene of accidents Credit: London Air Ambulance

An air ambulance fleet is to become the first in the UK to carry blood on board its aircraft and cars. London Air Ambulance hopes the blood will help medics save more lives at the scene of an accident before a patient is transferred to hospital.

An air ambulance fleet is to become the first in the UK to carry blood on board its aircraft and cars. London Air Ambulance hopes the blood will help medics save more lives at the scene of an accident before a patient is transferred to hospital.

Every year staff from London Air Ambulance process around 100 "code reds" which involve alerting a hospital that it needs to have blood ready for a patient suffering severe blood loss.

Being able to administer blood at the scene could save some of these lives.