Medics treating wounded 7/7 survivors ran out of supplies and had to use first-aid kits from a Marks & Spencer store and a hotel, the inquest has heard.
Paul Dadge, the former firefighter famously photographed hugging victim Davinia Turrell as she clutched a white burns mask to her face, said there was little doctors and nurses could do without the right equipment.
Mr Dadge was a passenger on the train behind the one blown up by suicide bomber Mohammed Sidique Khan at Edgware Road Tube station on July 7, 2005, killing six people.
He described coming across the shocked and injured survivors of the attack and setting up a casualty station in the Marks & Spencer near the station.
Mr Dadge was pictured helping Ms Turrell across the road to the Hilton Metropole Hotel after the store was evacuated because of a bomb scare sparked by an abandoned laptop bag.
He recalled that doctors and nurses were brought to the hotel from nearby hospitals but said shortages of supplies meant their efforts were limited to grading the severity of the victims’ injuries, known as “triaging”.
In a statement read to the inquest, he said: “The medical resources on the scene were limited to the two paramedics and the small number of staff from the London helicopter emergency medical service team. We had run out of oxygen and dressings and had become reliant on first-aid supplies from Marks & Spencer and the Hilton Metropole Hotel.
“Plus, it had become apparent that the police had become aware of the lack of medical resources on the scene and had begun to blue-light medical staff from St Mary’s Hospital and other hospitals within the area to the scene.
“Nurses, consultants and even a National Health Service priest arrived at the hotel, although I think it is worth mentioning at this point that it was great, but without the medical supplies there was not much they could do other than retriage the people who had initially been assessed by myself and others.”
He added there was a “noticeable” delay in ambulances arriving, meaning a large number of the walking wounded had to be taken to hospital in police riot vans.