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Lower South Island airports put safety first

Queenstown, Wanaka, Dunedin and Invercargill airports will once again come together to talk health, safety and security within aviation for this year’s annual Airport Safety Week, which runs 14 to 18 October 2019.

The theme for all airports in New Zealand and Australia is Our Airport Our Community and each of the four lower South Island airports will host a series of events tailored to their airport communities while key staff will participate in an exchange programme, visiting each other’s airports and taking part in activities.

Queenstown Airport GM Operations and Safety Mike Clay says Airport Safety Week is an important opportunity to shine a light on airport safety and create opportunities to bring airport communities closer together.

“Our top priority is safety first, always – we want to ensure a safe and healthy environment for our customers and staff every day. The week enables us to promote what we do day-to-day and raise awareness about the importance of health and safety in a fun, informative way.”

This is the fourth year that Queenstown Airport has taken part in Airport Safety Week, a safety campaign designed to engage staff and contractors working at airports. It is a collaboration between the Australian Airports Association (AAA) and the NZ Airports Association (NZ Airports) which is supported by airports on both sides of the ditch.

“Our programme of events for this year is our biggest yet with diverse activities across both airports. This year’s theme builds on our core company value of working together as ‘One Team’, so it’s particularly relevant this year,” says Mike.

Almost twenty events and initiatives will take place during the week including an Airport Rescue Fire and St Johns 'Restart the Heart' workshop at both airports to see if members of the airport communities can restart the heart of the dummy using the latest defibrillator technology.

A ‘Managing Stress and Building Resilience’ session, led by Elizabeth Denton from OCP, aims to raise awareness and create an open dialogue within our communities on stress, anxiety and depression, looking at how to support others and seek help.

An ‘Environmental Wellness’ workshop, a collaboration between Sustainable Queenstown and Kiwi Harvest, will look at the work of Kiwi Harvest, food resilience, growing veggies, and all things food.

Other highlights include a Drone Awareness and Flight Demonstration from BECA, Emergency Preparedness session with Airport Rescue Fire, Air Traffic Control Tower visit, FOD Walks*, Fire Trailer Demo at Wanaka Airport, and an Otago Heli Rescue and Air Milford Display, giving people the opportunity to get a little closer to our locally-based Rescue Helicopter and one of Air Milford's Cessna Caravans.

“It’s also great to be working closely with Dunedin and Invercargill airports on this initiative as part of our collaborative working relationship to identify opportunities and joint initiatives,” says Mike.

“As airports of the Lower South, while we celebrate our unique aspects and DNA, we also share the same goal to provide a safe, secure and healthy environment for our team, airport communities, suppliers, contractors and customers.”

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