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Northern NSW : Summer 2013-14
Todd Mulville has been with the Westpac Rescue Helicopter Service for more than ten years. He has worked as a casual rescue crewman for, four years and has been a fulltime Air Crewman since. Todd’s dad was one of the original crewmen when the Ser vice began in 1975 and considers himself well and truly part of the Community’s Own family. “T he biggest job I’ve ever been involved with was at Point Plomer. “We were tasked to Point Plomer camping ground at 2330 following the explosion of a barbeque gas bottle. Seven people had been injured. We arrived on scene at 0100 and found a little opening near the beach where we could land. It was immediately apparent that this was a traumatic scene. We were told then that there had been children injured. “We transpor ted two patients, a four year old boy and a 43 year old man, both suffering burns, to Port Macquarie Hospital. There we met a second helicopter. From Port Macquarie Hospital we transported the 43 year old male to Royal North Shore Hospital, and the boy was transported by the second helicopter to Westmead.” As an Air Crewman, Todd works what’s called in the industr y a 10/14 shift – two 10 hour day shifts and two 14 hour night shifts per week. A day in the life Vale Gwen French The role of an air crewmen includes, aircraft checks at the beginning of every shift, liaising with the pilots on mission planning, instrument scanning, accident location, patient repor ts for paramedics as well as being the hoist operators when called upon. Finish shift and handover to the night crew. 1800 Aircraft clean to make ready for oncoming night shift. 1600 Helmet inspections. My secondary duty is to look af te r our fleet of 30 Alpha Eagle Helmets, e ach wo r th $3,000. 1400 Study. We have exams every few months to ke ep skills and knowledge up-to-date. 1000 Lunch and rest. Due to shift time s we must have a 2hr re st. 1200 Daily dutie s, r anging fro m aircraft wash every Friday to O2 orders and general housekeeping. 0900 Aircraf t checks. The helicopters are checked at the beginning of e ach shift by the pilot, both flight cr ew a nd engineers. 0805 Arrive at work for an 0800 start. Handover from night crew – details from their 14 hour shift, equipment that needs cleaning or picked up from the hospital and aircraft status. At any time during the shift we could be tasked by the NSW Ambulance Ser vice for a mission 0730 Gwen French and her husband Eddie have been wonderful supporters of the Service for many years. Over the last several years they helped to raise $65,500 by holding BBQ’s and selling raffle tickets at the Island Leisure Village in Anna Bay. Sadly, Gwen passed away on 10 September, just five months after celebrating 50 wonderful years of marriage. Gwen and Eddie renewed their vows surrounded by their family and closest friends at their beloved caravan home. Gwen was a ver y generous and loving woman who delighted in spending time with her family. She enjoyed playing Housie and she will be missed by all her Housie friends. Page 16 Westpac Rescue Helicopter Ser vice - Rescue Summer 2013
Rescue - Autumn 2014