HOSPITAL staff should not have to live in fear of being attacked, residents have said.

The Leader previously reported that Wrexham Maelor Hospital car park has been branded as ‘dangerous’ after thousands of pounds worth of damage to cars has been caused over the past few years.

Leader readers had their say on the continuing issue of safety.

Natalee Jones said: “It’s not advice we need, it’s security and protection from the recent stint of attacks on staff who are finishing shifts and from vandalism of staff cars.

“CCTV, well-lit car parks and regular security patrols. Staff shouldn’t have to live in fear of being attacked or their cars being vandalised and then paying for the damage to be corrected.”

Leonie Saffy said: “Never seen any security there. The last thing staff and patients need (especially if they have had bad news) is to come out to car damage. Some people are just so selfish! What would make someone behave like this?”

Neal Begg added: “Why doesn't the NHS in Wales abandon it's free car parking and establish a new system where it has security paid for by the parking charges and staff get free parking and out patients get a bar code on their appointment letter. In-patients get vouchers to issue to their visitors and hopefully there will be space as well.”

Issues have previously been raised over lack of security on site, resulting in incidents of vandalism and anti-social behaviour.

The Leader:

Staff members said they felt ‘distressed’ and ‘unsafe’ when leaving their car – which is part of an ongoing security issue – but they have no other choice but to drive to work.

Gwenda Parry Strong said their car had been damaged whilst she was receiving treatment at A&E and no note was left.

Similarly, Laura Chaloner has reported three security incidents over the past few months but ‘nothing was done’.

She said: “People had their car windows smashed in and the glass is still visible in the car park over three months on. So no, BCUHB, nothing has been resolved by anyone in estates or security. Actually, does security even exist? Been there five years and never seen any.”

Rebecca Campbell also had her car broken into whilst she was doing a night shift – which cost her £300 to go to work that night.

Lisa Hartley said her car has been damaged on ‘numerous occasions’ including key marks being dragged down the length of the door.

Mandy Neal said: “It's disgusting that the hospital security isn’t doing more. The staff there work hard and long hours. They shouldn’t have to be forking out money for damaged cars or be scared of being attacked on the car park. Time to sort it out.”

Janet Reynolds added: “It’s a nightmare when you go to the hospital, need to look at park and ride, people just park anywhere and block people in. I arrived at 9am last week and it took me an hour to park, I had to go at the back of the hospital pay and display. This is so stressful noone to speak to either. Disgusting.”

Some readers suggested a private firm to install registration plate recognition cameras or a park and ride to be made nearby for visitors.

Eileen Williams said: “Vandalism is wrong full stop. I totally agree the huge parking problem is getting worse, enough stress going there in the first place without having to think of how early you have to leave for an appointment but no way would I condone anyone using vandalism as a way of solving the problems.”

A spokesman from Betsi Cadwaladr Health Board said with the help of North Wales Police, recent incidents have been ‘resolved’.

They added: “We are aware of a number of reported incidents and recognise how worrying this must be for staff and visitors to the hospital.

“We have been working closely with our Health and Safety team and North Wales Police to introduce a number of interim measures, including increased police patrols, until a longer-term solution is available.”