Otago Daily Times

Emer­gency ve­hi­cle fleet grows

WANAKA

- KER­RIE WATERWORTH ker­rie.waterworth@odt.co.nz Otago · Volkswagen · Volkswagen Type 2

ST John’s new Wanaka first re­sponse ve­hi­cle will mean faster re­sponse times and bet­ter health out­comes for pa­tients in the area, the or­gan­i­sa­tion says.

Cen­tral Otago ter­ri­tory man­ager David Bail­lie said the new ve­hi­cle was de­signed for vol­un­teer crews to be able to quickly lo­cate and as­sess pa­tients, and trans­port them lo­cally or to meet a he­li­copter or trans­port­ing am­bu­lance.

‘‘This will ul­ti­mately shorten job cy­cles, en­able crews to re­main in the lo­cal com­mu­nity and be avail­able to re­spond to emer­gen­cies more of­ten,’’ he said.

The unit has been de­scribed as smaller and nim­bler than a tra­di­tional am­bu­lance, and ideal for the nar­row roads and dif­fi­cult ter­rain of­ten found in ru­ral en­vi­ron­ments.

It is based on the Volk­swa­gen Trans­porter T6 am­bu­lance, which is used as a frontline am­bu­lance through­out Europe.

It car­ries all the equip­ment found in a tra­di­tional am­bu­lance, in­clud­ing a first re­sponse kit, de­fib­ril­la­tor, re­sus­ci­ta­tion equip­ment, lift­ing and ex­trac­tion gear, oxy­gen set and per­sonal pro­tec­tion gear.

Mr Bail­lie said Wanaka’s first re­sponse unit was part of changes to St John’s ser­vice de­liv­ery model as it en­tered the fourth and fi­nal year of its dou­ble­crew­ing project.

Apart from the new ve­hi­cle, Wanaka’s St John fleet also had a frontline am­bu­lance and a four­wheel drive am­bu­lance.

 ?? PHOTO: KER­RIE WATERWORTH ?? New ad­di­tion to the fleet . . . St John am­bu­lance of­fi­cer Zac Armstrong at the rear of the first re­sponse unit which will be used by St John vol­un­teers.
PHOTO: KER­RIE WATERWORTH New ad­di­tion to the fleet . . . St John am­bu­lance of­fi­cer Zac Armstrong at the rear of the first re­sponse unit which will be used by St John vol­un­teers.

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