Northamptonshire Search & Rescue rolls out not one, but two new rescue vehicles
Written by RADio Newsdesk on August 20, 2019
Article Published on Tuesday August 20, 2019 12:05 AM by RADio Newsdesk
- Daventry News - Northamptonshire Search & Rescue rolls out not one, but two new rescue vehicles
Not one, but two new rescue vehicles are being launched today by Northamptonshire Search & Rescue (NSAR) meaning that accessing remote areas with staff and equipment is now even easier. Every minute saved accessing the casualty is another minute to save lives and reunite families. The vehicles will be used in the search for missing and vulnerable people across the county as well as carry team members and lifesaving equipment.
“Brenda” is the ICU (Incident Control Unit) and named after a long-term supporter’s late mother. This vehicle offers mobile operation command for missing person searches and other incidents. Onboard it has two PCs, mobile 4G wifi, GPS enabled tracking of team members and assets, full UK digital mapping, and printing facilities, offering three 21-inch monitors, and a 38-inch command screen. In addition, offering a seated command position of police and fire officers, with connections for their equipment. The vehicle is also future-proofed ready for drone downlinks and next generation equipment. The vehicle was custom designed, engineered, and built by Vehicle Conversion Specialists (VCS Ltd).
“Poppy” is the OSU (Operational Support Unit) is a 4×4 capable vehicle, able to transport five team members and all their equipment to any location in the county. Onboard it also carries access and rescue equipment, medical resources, and collapsible stretchers. Based on a highly capable Toyota Hilux, this will serve in all locations and conditions with lifesaving reliability. Her name is in memory of all those lost in wars and conflict before, one of the original purposes of Search & Rescue teams.
The NSAR team is staffed entirely by volunteers and funded by donations, it provides Search & Rescue support to the police, fire and local resilience groups.
The total cost of these projects was over £82,000. The team and its supporters have been fund raising and working hard to do this, and after nearly two years of work, the team are excited to take ownership of these essential resources.
Grants and donations were received from the OPFCC Stephen Mold, AVIVA Community Fund, The Big Lottery, Tesco Token Scheme, Morrison’s Community Fund, Kettering Councilors Community Fund, Young Farmers of Northamptonshire, The Masons, SoftCat, Western Power Distribution, The David Laing Foundation, K9 Vehicle Graphics, Gearmate storage systems, as well as incredibly generous donations and ongoing support from the people of Northamptonshire.
Because of this incredible community support, the team has been able to achieve its goal of launching a brand new custom made Incident Control Unit (ICU), AND simultaneously launch a 4×4 Operational Support Unit (OSU).
These will operate along the teams already existing 4×4 ambulance, known as “Amy” a fully converted Land Rover Defender 110, capable of patient transport and recovery.
Northamptonshire Fire and Rescue Service has very kindly agreed to store the vehicles securely for the team, with the ICU being based at The Mounts in Northampton, a central and secure 24-hour accessible location for the county, and the OSU at Wellingborough Station, also with secure 24-hour access.
Chief Constable Nick Adderley said: “Our relationship with Northamptonshire Search and Rescue is one I place great importance on and I’m really pleased to support the launch of these two new vehicles.
“Knowing that Northamptonshire Police can call on the expert skills of Search and Rescue volunteers when needed provides invaluable support to the force, and helps us to do all we can to keep people in our county safe.
“A lot of hard work and dedication went into the fundraising for these new vehicles and I congratulate everyone at the charity on their launch. I have no doubt that they will prove to be excellent additions to the Search and Rescue fleet and will be put to the very best use helping those who find themselves in need.”
Spokesperson for NSAR said: “We are so happy to finally be launching these new vehicles, we know they have been designed to be cutting edge, and take the teams search & rescue capabilities to the next level. We also know this could not have been done without the incredible support of the community we live in. The people and businesses of Northamptonshire have been amazing at every turn they have helped.
“It’s clear they value the team and what we do, and we can only thanks them from the bottom of our hearts for that. We will continue coming out whenever we are called to look for those lost, missing or in distress.”
The team wish to express their thanks to all its supporters and donators who helped make this possible.
“We know we can’t name everybody, and we wish we could, but we want to pay a special thanks to Alex Freegard, who championed the securing of a £25,000 grant for the project. This was done in memory of a missing person, and in honour of this the team has included a Blue Butterfly on the roof.”
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