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UK riots: London doctors use unmarked cars

August 09, 2011 23:40 IST

Amid the rioting and looting in cities across the UK, London-based general practitioners -- including many of Indian origin -- have been using personal unmarked cars to reach patients to avoid being targeted by mobs because their usual cars resemble those of the police.

According to Dr Stewart Kay, chair of the Southwark Local Medical Committee, doctors in areas hit by rioting such as Brixton, Peckham and Clapham, had decided not to do home visits in the usual doctors cars, because they feared their resemblance with police cars would single them out for attack.

He told the doctors journal Pulse: "Clearly (the service] was severely affected, but in a manageable way. We did not take our cars out because cars look like police cars".

However, Dr Kay said that despite disruption caused by the riots, doctors had coped admirably with the situation so far.

He said: "There have been a few smashed windows but I think most things can be handled sensibly."

Rioting and looting that started on Saturday, sparked by Thursday night's death of Duggan, spread across London, and also flared up in the central city of Birmingham, the western city of Bristol and the northwestern city of Liverpool.

In other areas of London, doctors had reverted to emergency appointments only since the weekend. At least one surgery had its clinical waste bin taken from outside the premises.

Many patients cancelled their appointments with doctors in areas where there had been much trouble.

Besides doctors, people working in offices were also affected with many leaving home early to avoid being caught in riots.

Also Read:
In Birmingham, miscreants wait till night dawns
Cameron vows to crush riots; 16,000 cops deployed

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