Home' Central District Times : April 12th 2012 Contents 7
CENTRAL DISTRICT TIMES, APRIL 12, 2012
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Freemasons donate to rescue service
By TERRY KARATAU
Light up: The Masonic Lodge
handover of the HUET and associated
equipment plus a set of night vision
goggles. From left Grand Almoner
Gordon Riach, PNRH lead pilot Marc
Bridgeman and United Horowhenua
Lodge secretary Errol Brown.
Little is known of the support
Otaihape Freemasons give to local
charities and organisations.
The current project executed by
the lodges of the Masonic Central
Districts is no exception.
The United Horowhenua Lodge
and Te Awahou Lodge approached
lodges based in four Masonic Dis-
tricts who are within the Palmer-
ston North Rescue Helicopter area,
to raise funds to purchase a special
Helicopter Underwater Evacuation
With the help of the Freemasons
Charity, 535 Freemasons from 15
lodges donated the cost of the
HUET, its trailer and cover, related
ancillary materials and a set of
night vision Goggles worth more
The equipment was handed over
to the Palmerston North Rescue
Helicopter (PNRH) recently in
Flight lead pilot of the helicopter
Marc Bridgeman said he was most
impressed and thanked the Masonic
Lodge saying the HUET and associ-
ated equipment will make a differ-
ence to training and operations.
He added that the night vision
goggles were extremely important
and with a third set on hand, the
ability to carry out operations at
night has been greatly improved.
The Otaihape lodge made a large
financial contribution to the fund
and Grand Almoner Gordon Riach,
who is the divisional benevolence
officer for the central region was
involved with the project along with
Errol Brown, the secretary of the
United Horowhenua lodge.
Civil Aviation require helicopter
staff operating at night on search
and rescue missions to have
approved training on evacuation
procedures if a landing occurs on
water and so the Phillips Rescue
Trust, the holding company for the
Palmerston North Life Flight Trust
Helicopter, suggested the HUET
450 have say
on service plan
Interest in the proposed service model for the
Regional Women s Health Service issued by MidCen-
tral and Whanganui DHBs has been considerable.
More than 450 submissions have been received so
far. People who are still to give their feedback have
another four more weeks to do so.
Many individuals and groups are taking the oppor-
tunity to have their say and several have requested
additional time so they can fully consider the pro-
Given the significance of the proposed change, both
district health boards agreed to extend the deadline
for feedback from April 11 to 4pm on May 9.
MidCentral District Health Board chairman Phil
Sunderland said: There has been a lot of interest
and we want to make sure everyone has the oppor-
tunity to express their views. Feedback from the
community and staff will help inform the future
shape of services and the boards decision.
The extended period for feedback will mean a
final proposal will now be submitted to both boards
in June/July, not May, but we believe it s important
we get it right.
The service proposal is that Wanganui district
women having a normal pregnancy, labour and birth
will continue to have their babies in their local bir-
thing centres, including Whanganui Hospital. How-
ever, services will be provided from the larger
regional health service at Palmerston North Hospital
for those women who require specialist obstetric and
acute gynaecology care.
A Lower Hutt woman was airlifted to Whanganui
Hospital by the Palmerston North rescue helicopter
on Monday morning following a crash on State High-
way 4 near Ohakune.
The 25-year-old victim was among several injured
in the two-vehicle crash but was the only one
airlifted to hospital. It is understood she has back
and internal injuries.
Rescue helicopter pilot Chris Moody said they were
unable to land at the crash site because of cattle, so
landed at a nearby sports field and met an ambu-
lance there. Both cars in the crash were damaged
with one ending up on its side and the other badly
destroyed, he said.
Ohakune Volunteer Fire Brigade, police and St
John Ambulance attended the incident.
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