The Institution of Occupational Safety and Health has reacted strongly to reports in the Daily Mail claiming that health and safety rules stopped paramedics helping the victims of the shootings in Cumbria.

Reports in the Daily Mail over the weekend suggested that fears over health and safety meant Cumbrian police kept ambulance crews at a safe distance and grounded rescue helicopters until every shooting scene was cleared.

John Holden, President of the Institution of Occupational Safety and Health, said:

“It wasn’t health and safety rules that the Cumbrian police adopted, it was standard policing procedures. We’ve spoken to Cumbria police who’ve confirmed that this was the case.

“If a paramedic had been shot attending to one of Derrick Bird’s victims then I daresay papers like the Daily Mail would be damning the police for putting their colleagues in harm’s way.

“Both the Cumbrian police and the people of Cumbria deserve our support in the difficult days that lie ahead. The Daily Mail should take a step back and consider the task the community and its police force has ahead of it, rather than using health and safety as a means to attack Cumbrian police at such a difficult time.”