Families of patients who waited hours on hospital trolleys for a bed today angrily turned on health minister Frank Dobson during a visit to Bradford.

The Minister admitted waits on trolleys were unacceptable but said it was "bound to happen" in busy hospitals when there was a sudden surge in emergency admissions.

But the MP - launching the new £3 million Health Action Zone in the city - failed to take action which has infuriated two Bradford families.

The Telegraph & Argus told the Minister of two cases where pensioners had endured waits for five-and-a-half and nine hours on the same day at Bradford Royal Infirmary's casualty department. One of the patients suffering from chest pains later died.

Responding to the T&A Mr Dobson said: "Obviously people shouldn't be waiting on trolleys.

"But there will always be occasions when crises arise and nobody is daft enough to pretend they won't."

He said extra money had been provided to prevent problems over the winter and by and large this had prevented major difficulties.

But John Bakes, whose 72-year-old father Willie died after a five-and-a-half hour wait on a trolley, said: "It's just the sort of reaction you would expect him to make.

"To say sorry really isn't good enough - they should be looking at it as a countrywide problem and doing something about it."

Mr Bakes, from Thornton, said the Government needed to address the delays in the emergency admission system.

"This isn't just happening in Bradford - it's a national problem."

Mr Bakes' father was taken to casualty with chest pains and had to wait on the trolley until a bed could be found for him. He later died.

Mr Dobson's comments were also criticised by John Wright, whose stroke victim mother Iris, 67, spent nearly nine hours on a trolley at the BRI before a bed was found for her.

Mr Wright, of Wyke, said: "It's what we all expected -it's just typical of today.

"They are all full of words and they are going to do all sorts of things when they want your vote but when it comes down to the nitty gritty they are not prepared to do anything.

"Nobody seems to be concerned about it and maybe it's going to take a few more deaths before somebody does decide to do something ."

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