London terror hero grilled at inquest
A PARAMEDIC who was honoured with a bravery commendation after the London Bridge terror attack has been grilled during an inquest for not doing more to find victims amid revelations he still does not know where the attacks took place.
Andrew Beasley, an incident response officer with the London Ambulance Service, was subjected to intense questioning overnight in the Central Criminal Court by Gareth Patterson QC who represents six of the victims' families.
Mr Patterson asked Mr Beasley three times if he was responsible for locating causalities during the June 3, 2017 attack as he was assigned the role of "bronze sector" tasked with triage and patient extraction.
"The families that I represent want to know who was responsible for locating these casualties, was it you?" Mr Patterson asked during the tense exchange.
Mr Beasley - who has worked for LAS for more than 27 years - eventually replied, "I would say I had the responsibility".
He repeatedly said he was concerned about the safety of himself and staff as he had heard gun fire shortly after arriving on scene just south of the bridge and there were conflicting reports about the immediate threat level.
Despite being advised to leave the scene by police, Mr Beasley said he stayed because he knew people needed help.
Police were administering CPR to patients in the nearby Borough Markets, but their calls for medical assistance went unanswered.
Mr Beasley was tasked to London Bridge in response to reports of a van hitting a pedestrian, but told the court he felt "strange" after three armed response vehicles overtook him while he was en route.
The occupants of the van, Khuram Butt, 27, Rachid Redouane, 30, and Youssef Zaghba, 22, crashed and then went on a stabbing rampage with ceramic knives tied to their wrists before being shot by police.
Brisbane woman Sara Zelenak, 21, and South-Australian born Kirsty Boden, 28, were murdered along with six others. A further 48 people were injured.
Mr Patterson book ended his line of questioning by asking Mr Beasley if he knew where Boro Bistro was - the location where the majority of the attack took place in the Borough Market. The disbelief in Mr Patterson's tone became increasingly obvious as Mr Beasley repeatedly replied he did not know.
Mr Beasley was honoured for his "exceptional bravery" during a police commendations ceremony seven months after the attack.
He told the court when he arrived on scene he was given a handover by advanced paramedic Keir Rutherford who said the situation was worse than they'd been told.
Tactical response paramedic Gary Edwards left with Mr Rutherford to triage patients and came across Ms Zelenak who he quickly determined was deceased.
The only Briton killed in the attack, James McMullan, 32, was set upon by the terrorists when he tried to help Ms Zelenak to her feet after she slipped over.
Police officers attempted CPR on Mr McMullan for about 30 minutes before carrying him to where Mr Beasley was located. He was declared deceased shortly after.
Mr Patterson has repeatedly questioned LAS witnesses as to why they were unaware patients needed help in the courtyard near Boro Bistro despite police officers putting calls through via radio and yelling.
Mr Beasley said he did not know, but suggested it may be because they use different radio systems.
The inquest continues.