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Northern NSW : Rescue Winter15
Pilots and crewmen from the Westpac Rescue Helicopter Service recently undertook specialist training in Sweden made possible by funding support from mining company Glencore. Service Chief Pilot Mike de Winton, Pilot Graham Anderson and Air Crewman Nathan Langham travelled to Oxford Aviation Academy in Stockholm for a four-day training program. The training involved a number of rescue scenarios in the academy’s simulators with specialised training in mine-site retrieval working with mine safety personnel. ‘The training increases and maintains the skills of our pilots and crew, reducing the risk of mishap, injury, inconvenience and cost to patients, aircraft and crew,’ Service General Manager, Richard Jones said. ‘The value of the Oxford Academy simulators is in repetition. Each scenario can be done repeatedly until competencies are achieved. ‘The assistance from Glencore continues to provide our people with access to some of the world’s best training facilities that we put into practice for our community,’ Mr Jones said. Glencore’s Community Relations Manager, Craig Strudwick, said the company supported this aspect of the Service because of its relevance to the mining industry. ‘Our corporate funding is complemented by a very strong payroll deduction program, which reflects the extremely high value we place on the Westpac Rescue Helicopter Service,’ Mr Strudwick said. ‘The Service also is regularly involved in Glencore’s Level 1 emergency simulation exercises, conducted throughout the year at the company’s open cut and underground operations across the Hunter and Mid-Western regions. Helping to take skills to an even higher level by supporting the specialist training in Sweden is something we were keen to support,’ he said. Glencore fund vital to Rescue Helicopter training United Services makes it official For many years people working at local Councils have generously given a few dollars from their payroll with the support of the United Services Union. In the New England North West there are now members of the Union from every Council who are part of the workplace giving program with the Service. So many in fact, the Service moved to recognise the Union and its members as a Logo Right Partner of the New England North West Service. Chris Preston, who has been personally giving for the past 13 years, believes the Rescue Helicopter’s aeromedical search and rescue services provided in remote rural and coastal areas are essential. ‘It can be a long time to wait for an ambulance for some of our regional members. ‘You may not ever need it, but it’s good to know the Service is always there in an emergency, which is why it’s so important for local communities to keep supporting,’ Chris said. Our photo shows members of the United Services Union with staff of the Tamworth based Service. 8 Rescue Magazine WINTER 2015
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