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Puppets teach children about staying safe online

Children as young as three are being warned about the dangers posed by the internet.

To some parents such a move may seem excessive, but the organisers of the campaign say it's essential that even pre-school youngsters understand the risks that exist.

And to help get a complex message across to those so young a special puppet play has been developed to help them.

Malcolm Shaw spoke to Jane Crawshaw, Traum Theatre Company, Donna Comerford, Brighton Digital Festival, and Emily Cherry, NSPCC.


Specialist trauma network means higher patient survival rates

The Wessex Trauma Network (WTN) links trauma centres across the south Credit: PA

More patients in the south are surviving life-threatening injuries because of a network of trauma specialists, according to an independent audit by the Trauma Audit and Research Network (TARN).

The Wessex Trauma Network (WTN) consists of one trauma centre - based at Southampton General Hospital - and seven units across the south.

Southampton General Hospital's trauma centre has a full range of specialist surgical and intensive care for adults and children who suffer major trauma. The seven units are based at Portsmouth, Basingstoke, Poole, Dorset, Salisbury, Chichester and on the Isle of Wight – as well as two ambulance services and the Hampshire and Isle of Wight Air Ambulance.

The Network means that patients across the region with major injuries now bypass their local hospitals to go directly to Southampton if their injury occurs within a 60-minute drive, while those injured further afield are taken to their nearest trauma unit and assessed and resuscitated before being rapidly transferred if they require specialist intervention.

Last year, the centre saw 571 patients with immediately life-threatening injuries compared to 272 in 2012, and 419 patients with potentially life-changing injuries compared to 226 in 2012.

The development of major trauma centres and networks have ensured patients are treated by the right clinicians in the right locations as quickly as possible and that is why we are seeing such fantastic improvements in survival.

We have a tremendous network in our region with excellent teamwork across our ambulances services, trauma units and the trauma centre and clinicians throughout the WTN are constantly looking for ways to improve further.”

– Dr Mark Baxter, director of major trauma at UHS

"Shameless" motorist used dead mum’s details on fake Blue Badge

Generic: Blue Badge patrols checking vehicles in East Sussex Credit: East Sussex County Council

A woman from Hastings has been fined for displaying a fake Blue Badge with her dead mother’s name while out shopping.

Geraldine Roberts, 66, had parked in a disabled bay at a Tesco Extra store in St Leonards, in June, using the fraudulent badge. A police officer spotted the fake which was a photocopy of a Blue Badge which Robert's had doctored to insert a new expiry date, a fake stamp from ‘Hounslow Council’ and the name of her late mother – who had died two and a half years ago.

Roberts was fined over £500.

This was a deliberate, shameless and not particularly sophisticated attempt to cheat the system.

Every time someone fraudulently uses a blue badge, they are taking up spaces which are needed by people who are genuinely disabled.

We estimate this kind of fraud can also cost the taxpayer up to £5,000 in lost parking revenues and the cost of installing more disabled parking bays.

Hopefully this prosecution will send out a clear warning to anyone tempted to carry out a similar offence that it will not be tolerated and we won’t hesitate to prosecute offenders.”

– Cllr Carl Maynard, county council lead member for transport and environment


Passers-by jump into raging sea to save stranger's life

Passers-by jumped into a raging Brighton sea to save a stranger from drowning.

29-year-old wheelchair user, Sally Whitney, was with her dog when she slid down a treacherous slipway and into the water.

Her carer was one of those who risked their life diving in - but she wasn't the only one, as passers by rushed to help. Andy Dickenson reports.

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