AN underground gas leak resulted in elderly hospital patients being transferred while the problem was resolved.

The 18 patients from Guisborough Primary Care Hospital at the weekend after workmen detected the problem.

The leak was capped off but South Tees Hospitals Trust took the decision to transfer the patients to other primary care hospitals in the area including Carter Bequest, Redcar and East Cleveland as there was no heating and hot water supply.

The urgent care centre, which is based in the Guisborough hospital, also had to be closed on Sunday (April 28).

Divisional manager for community services Mandy Headland said: “In situations like this, which are unforeseeable, our first priority is the safety and welfare of patients and we quickly took the decision to temporarily move them to other hospitals in the area.

“I’d really like to thank all our staff, the contractors and our colleagues at the North East Ambulance Service for pulling together so quickly at the weekend.”

Contractors worked throughout the weekend and temporary measures are now in place to provide heating and hand-washing facilities to parts of the hospital.

This means the trust’s outpatient clinics and its other services run at the hospital such as radiology and the urgent care centre, resumed as normal today (Monday).

However, while work continues to determine the cause of the fault and fix it, which could take up to a week, the trust has decided not to move patients back until a permanent gas supply is in place.