24 missions in 4 days: Busy time for rescue chopper
THE boss of the Westpac Life Saver Rescue Helicopter is urging people to stay safe this weekend, after the service was called out 24 times in just four days over the Easter long weekend.
The service then received a further eight calls since Tuesday.
Chief executive Richard Jones said it was one of the busiest weekends on record.
"Our helicopter crews responded around the clock to emergency calls throughout Northern NSW and were kept busy at each of our three bases in Belmont, Tamworth and Lismore," he said.
"With this recent run of good weather and the Easter holiday period, so many people are out enjoying the great outdoors.
"This means more people are on the roads, in the ocean, on farms and enjoying all kinds of recreational activities."
The helicopter and crews responded to a range of needs this past weekend including primary emergency response to scenes, inter hospital medical transfers and search and rescue missions both offshore and inland.
Westpac rescue helicopters are on standby 24-7 from three bases with medical professionals from NSW Ambulance and the NSW Health Local Health District on every flight.
"Our role in the emergency services chain is to fly critical care medical teams direct to patients as fast and safe as possible, as well as providing urgent transport back to hospitals," Mr Jones said.
"We're just one link in the chain of emergency services but after such a busy period for all in the chain, we're urging our community to stay safe."