Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | News Video | Crime | Employers | Housing | Immigration | Legal | Local Govt. | Maori | Welfare | Unions | Youth | Search

 

From Phuket to Banda Aceh - Major Debs Blythen

6 January 2005

From Phuket to Banda Aceh - Army Nurse Major Debs Blythen

Army Nurse, Major Debs Blythen treats refugees on board an RNZAF C-130 Hercules

From Phuket to the devastated Indonesian region of Banda Aceh, nothing could have prepared Major Debs Blythen for what she's seen over the past week.

Born in Hamilton, the Army Nurse found herself in Phuket on New Years Eve, searching hospitals for injured New Zealanders.

"It was a long slow process, people had been moved from hospital to hospital and just because of the share volume of people - it was hard to fit the pieces together."

But in among the thousands injured Debs managed to find some Kiwis.

"It was remarkable to hear first hand how they got away from the waves and how it's affected them."

In the heat of Thailand Debs also checked endless lists of names, and boards covered in photos of the missing.

"It was really sobering to put faces to the disasters. You just kept on seeing pictures of honeymooners and children, that's when I realised the magnitude."

As part of the Aero Medical Evacuation (AME) team Debs, who is normally based at RNZAF Base Ohakea was deployed from Phuket to Jakarta.

As a flight nurse Debs job now is to fly to Banda Aceh on board one of the two RNZAF Hercules operating in the region.

There she assesses local refugees flying to Jakarta.

"It's an incredible sight, long lines of people waiting to get on to the Herc, the injured being carried, the elderly, women and children and then of course the men."

Once the refugees are in the aircraft Debs treats the injured.

"We're seeing a lot of lacerations, cuts and skin wounds."

With the badly injured lying on stretchers and others sitting shoulder to shoulder on the floor of the aircraft, Debs keeps a close eye on her passengers.

"We're not doing anything astounding - we just want to help out we can."

EDNS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Gordon Campbell: On The Peters/Ardern Triumph

There are a lot of good reasons to feel joyful about this outcome. It is what so many young voters – the best hope for the country’s future – wanted.

Far more important than the implications for the Economy Gods ( is the dollar up or down? ) last night’s outcome will also mean many, many vulnerable New Zealanders will have a better life over the next three years at least.

Yet the desire for change was in the majority, across the country..>>>More


Reaction

Labour on its agreement |Peters: Post-Election Announcement Speech | Greenpeace “cautiously hopeful” about new Government | ACT - Madman on the loose | E tū ecstatic | Chamber welcomes the outcome | Greens on their joining Govt | EDS welcomes new govt | Immigrant groups worry | Feds ready to engage new coalition government | Labour Ministers of the Crown announced

 

Climate: Increasing Greenhouse Emissions Hit NZ

New Zealand is seeing impacts of excess greenhouse gas emissions in our climate and oceans, according to the latest national report from the Ministry for the Environment and Stats NZ about the state of the atmosphere and climate…More>>

ALSO:


Wellington.Scoop: Arrests At Blockade Of "Weapons Expo"

“We encourage people in Wellington to get down to the Westpac Stadium now for a day of awesome peace action. There will be plenty of food, music and activities to keep us sustained through the day.” More>>

ALSO:

Rorschach Restructuring: PSA Taking Inland Revenue To Court Over Psychometrics

The Public Service Association will be seeing Inland Revenue in Employment Court over its intention to psychometrically test employees reapplying for their roles at the department as part of its controversial Business Transformation restructuring plan. More>>

ALSO:

Nuclear Disarmament: Nobel Peace Prize 2017 Awarded To ICAN

Congratulations from iCAN Aotearoa New Zealand to international iCAN, the other iCAN national campaigns and partner organisations, and the countless organisations and individuals who have worked so hard for a nuclear weapons-free world since 1945. More>>

ALSO:

Expenses: Waikato DHB CEO Resigns

An independent inquiry has identified that Dr Murray had spent more than the agreed $25K allocated for relocation costs, and other unauthorized expenses involving potential financial breaches of the chief executive’s obligations. More>>

ALSO:

Wellington.Scoop: Sad About The Trolley Buses?

The Regional Council’s MetLink is today spending money to tell us that it really loves Wellington’s trolley buses, even though they’re all being taken off our roads by the end of this month. More>>

ALSO:

Post-Election: Preliminary Coalition Talks Begin

New Zealand First will hold post-election preliminary discussions in Wellington with the National Party tomorrow morning and the Labour Party tomorrow afternoon. More>>

 
 
 
 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

  • PARLIAMENT
  • POLITICS
  • REGIONAL
 
 

Featured InfoPages

Opening the Election