Busy summer for local ambosFriday January 25, 2013 - 14:12 EDT
The Hunter's ambulance paramedics say a recent spate of bushfires, coupled with the extreme heat, has lead to a very busy start to summer.
Paramedics have been called to hundreds of emergencies over the holiday period, including car accidents and alcohol-related incidents.
Hunter Inspector Graeme Silver says the majority of calls for help have been water-related, with a surprising increase in scuba diving accidents.
He says local paramedics have been kept busy.
"We've got a spike but that's more in relation to the hot weather, also the fires," he said.
"Last week, as we're all aware, we had major fires in the area and that created some work load for us.
"Plus the extreme weather - very busy!"
© ABC 2013
More breaking news
Firefighters are patrolling a number of fires in Western Australia as the state takes stock of some of the worst fires in its history.
'Weather nerd' and social media celebrity joins Victoria's list of unsung Bureau of Meteorology heroes
Jono Ingram might refer to himself as a 'weather nerd', but to Donald locals in western Victoria, he is an online celebrity.
The drying effect of El Nino is restricting irrigation in northern Tasmania.