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Latest in search and rescue hits the Hauraki Gulf


Latest in search and rescue hits the Hauraki Gulf

A brand new purpose-built search and rescue vessel is set to join Coastguard’s fleet of rescue vessels as Coastguard Auckland welcomes their new ‘Lion Foundation Rescue’ vessel to meet the growing demand of Auckland’s boating community.

Described as the ‘flagship’ of the Units fleet, the new ‘Lion Foundation Rescue’ exhibits the latest in search and rescue technology including a first class ambulance bay to not only treat patients, but also patient transport from Hauraki Gulf Islands to medical facilities in collaboration with St Johns.

“It is an outstanding vessel and an asset that will be of huge value to the community. It will play a vital role in Coastguard’s search and rescue response in the Hauraki Gulf and will be one of the busiest rescue vessels in the country” said Callum Gillespie, Coastguard Northern Region CEO.

The 15m foil assisted catamaran represents a significant change from its predecessor, a 14.6m Naiad Inflatable which was in service for 12 years responding to over 1,000 calls for assistance in that time and bringing many people home safely. She will now be re-located to another Coastguard unit with the need for a larger vessel however with less demand.

“It is great to see the arrival of this much anticipated new rescue vessel to the Hauraki Gulf. Coastguard works best when it works together and this vessel represents a real collaboration of volunteers, the community and funders – delivering an outstanding outcome for Coastguard Auckland and the community it serves. We’d like to offer our sincere thanks to The Lion Foundation, ASB Community Trust, Lottery Grants Board, Trillian Trust and the hundreds of local businesses who have donated to make this significant project a reality. Their support of Coastguard and belief in the remarkable efforts of our volunteers is humbling and the reason we are able to save lives at sea” says Mr Gillespie.

The vessel was designed by Teknicraft and built by Q-West Boat Builders in Wanganui. Coastguard volunteers took the vessel on its maiden voyage around Cape Reinga to deliver her to her new home at Mechanics Bay in early February. The official launch of ‘Lion Foundation Rescue’ is to be held on Friday 6 March at the Royal New Zealand Yacht Squadron where tribute is to be paid to the funders and many local businesses that have made the $2.5 million project a reality.

‘Lion Foundation Rescue’ is one of three vessels operated by Coastguard Auckland based at Mechanics Bay. The Unit is made up of a team of 160 trained volunteers who last year dedicated 19,426 hours, making a remarkable contribution to our communities and responding to 588 calls for assistance bringing 1,740 people home to safety.

ends

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