Hotham Ski Patrol receive funding for new ambulance
MOUNT Hotham Ski Patrol have raised $40,000, in addition to being awarded 2-4-1 grant funding in the sum of $80,000 by Emergency Management Victoria (EMV) for the purchase of a new ambulance vehicle.
A total of $120,000 was funded to purchase the new vehicle, which is equivalent to the ones used by Ambulance Victoria. The ambulance has been decked out, sign painted and fitted to ski patrol purposes to be utilised during the winter season.
The Hotham Ski Patrol had been using an older vehicle to transport passengers within the resort and Dinner Plain and recently, they saw the need to upgrade their ambulance due to the poor state of their current one which then motivated them to fundraise and seek grant funding.
Full-time Ski Patroller David Wilson said that the hard efforts of the Ski Patrol volunteers and the support for the Ski Patrol had been overwhelming and a big reason behind their successful fundraising.
“A big part of getting the funds was a result of our fundraising event, the ‘Big Gig’ which we hold every August and this year it’s on August 12 at The General Store and at that event we auction off a variety of goods,” Mr Wilson said.
“The new ambulance means a much better and more reliable vehicle to transport our passengers and it will be more economical for the Resort Management Board to service and look after and much easier for patient transport due to more room and greater accessibility.”
In addition to the new ambulance ensuring that guests at Mt Hotham are safe, the Mount Hotham Medical Centre received funding for their afterhours medical services.
The funding will enable a daily after-hours medical service throughout the winter period from 5pm onwards and on weekends.
Craig Jenkins of Ambulance Victoria said that the funding would help keep the ambulance service on the mountain to respond to the most severe medical emergencies, while the medical centre will be able to relieve minor injuries.
“It helps us out in terms of having a facility available so we can take patients there to be seen afterhours, rather than taking patients through to Wangaratta which might need something as simple as an x-ray and would take us off the mountain for a minimum of five hours.
“It gives us the ability to keep local for injuries on the mountain, rather than leaving the mountain, so it’s a lot of pressure off us as a service,” Mr Jenkins said.
“So many things happen after hours, whether its people slipping on ice or people with illnesses that come out overnight and all sorts of things that we can deal with here if we have the doctors and medical centre available,” Mr Jenkins said.
◆ NEW WHEELS: Volunteer fundraising was crucial in securing the new Mt Hotham ambulance, which is a welcome addition to the Ski Patrol for winter 2017.