A FLEET of new ambulances, born and bred in West Yorkshire, is to hit the county's roads.

The new vehicles will begin serving the county's emergency patients today.

After six months in production, Brighouse Company UV Modular will hand over the keys to 29 Premia vehicles to the West Yorkshire Metropolitan Ambulance Service NHS Trust.

WYMAS fleet manager Richard Smith said: "We were really impressed with the build quality UV Modular were offering as well as the local after-care support package, which should help us reduce the length of time ambulances are off the road for repair.

"Most importantly feedback from our crews told us this was the vehicle for them and, as they are going to be working out of them day in day out, we took their views very much into consideration."

Calderdale paramedic Al Day helped test the vehicles.

He said: "For an ambulance, safety and reliability are paramount. The vehicle needs to perform well on all terrain and in all weather and withstand high speeds yet still provide patients with a secure, comfortable ride."

UV Modular's vice- chairman, Gill Wood, said: "We are delighted to have been given the opportunity to work with WYMAS in designing and building their new fleet and to play a small part in the vitally important and demanding service they provide."

The ambulances will replace older vehicles.

They will be used at stations including Brighouse, Dewsbury, Gildersome, Halifax, Honley, and Huddersfield.