Wellington Free Ambulance

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Wellington Free Ambulance
Wellington Free Ambulance Landscape Logo 2014.jpg
Formation 9 November 1927
Type Charitable organisation
Headquarters 19 Davis Street,
Thorndon,
Wellington
Location
Chief Executive Officer
Diana Crossan
Budget
~NZ$21 M
Staff
Approximately 300 staff and 80 volunteers
Website www.wfa.org.nz

Wellington Free Ambulance (also known as Wellington Free and WFA) is a charitable organisation providing free to the patient ambulance services in the Greater Wellington Region of New Zealand.

History[edit]

Former base in Cable Street

The Wellington Free Ambulance service was inaugurated on 9 November 1927 by the mayor of Wellington, Sir Charles Norwood. The catalyst for establishing a free ambulance service for the Wellington community came from the frustration of seeing an injured man lying on the road, and no hospital ambulance being available.

The service initially operated out of the Old Navals boatshed, which later became the Wellington Rowing Club clubhouse. The original station building soon proved to be less than desirable and in 1932, Lord Bledisloe laid the foundation stone on a purpose built station in Cable Street.

Wellington Free soon expanded, and in 1956 the first station to be built out of Wellington City was established in Lower Hutt, followed by stations in Upper Hutt (1961), and Porirua (1963). The Kapiti Coast finally got its ambulance station in 1977, the same year a station was established in Newtown.

By the early nineties, Wellington Free had outgrown its Cable St building. After a major fundraising effort, in 1994 Prince Charles opened a replacement station in Davis Street, Thorndon, which still operates as the Service's headquarters today.

Bases were established in Waikanae and Wainuiomata in 1999, a replacement Porirua Station building opened in October 2000, followed by the Linkspan Response Post on the Wellington Waterfront in November 2008, and the Johnsonville Station in May 2010.

In March 2011, after a concerted fundraising and significant contribution by the Wellington Free Ambulance Trust, the Newtown Regional Ambulance Station was opened in the new Wellington Hospital grounds. In March 2012, after successfully winning a Government tender to outsource the last DHB run ambulance service in the Wairarapa, Wellington Free Ambulance became the ambulance service in for the region.

Operations[edit]

A Mitsubishi Pajero of the Wellington Free Ambulance
A Mercedes Sprinter of the Wellington Free Ambulance - Emergency Ambulance Service
A Mercedes Sprinter of the Wellington Free Ambulance - Patient Transfer Service
A Mitsubishi Outlander of the Wellington Free Ambulance - Patient Transfer Service
Wellington Free Ambulance Rescue 1

The service annually assists nearly 74,000 patients in the Greater Wellington Region. The headquarters includes vehicle maintenance facilities, and a communications centre - one of three in the national network.

Funding[edit]

The cost of running the service in 2013 was $21M. 80% of this cost is met by the Ministry of Health and the Accident Compensation Corporation.[1][2] The remainder comes from donations and bequests from the public, proceeds from first aid training and supplies, and medical alarms.

Resources[edit]

As of 2014 the service has the following resources:[1]

  • 10 ambulance stations
  • 25 ambulances
  • 3 emergency fast response vehicles
  • 2 4WD rescue vehicles
  • 17 patient transport vehicles
  • 6 events ambulances
  • 1 Urgent Community Care vehicle
  • 1 major incident response truck
  • 2 major incident response trailers

References[edit]

  • Beasley, A.W. (1995). Borne Free - Wellington Free Ambulance 1927-1994. Grantham House. ISBN 1-86934-047-7. 
  1. ^ a b "Annual Report" (PDF). Wellington Free Ambulance. 2006. Archived from the original (PDF) on 2008-04-10. Retrieved 2007-11-12. 
  2. ^ "How we help". Accident Compensation Corporation. Retrieved 2007-10-11. 

External links[edit]