After two break-ins and lifesaving equipment stolen, Coastguard South Taranaki needed a helping hand to secure their storage facility. Thanks to a $5,084 grant from NZCT, the unit’s equipment will be protected through the installation of a security alarm system and CCTV camera.
The most recent break-in occurred in 2017. Volunteers were in the midst of training to operate their new fast response Inflatable Rescue Boat at the time. The theft of this equipment meant a delay in the unit increasing their operating capabilities, which would help reduce the risks in the area. Considerable funds needed to be raised to replace the stolen gear.
Coastguard Spokesperson Charlotte Inglis explains that the NZCT grant will make a huge difference. “There is a real sense of relief that the rescue equipment is finally secure in an area really close to where it will be needed. Our storage facility is located at the mouth of the Patea River, close to where we launch. Knowing that our equipment is safely stored where we can access it easily means we can focus on continuing to do our job, which is saving lives at sea.”
Coastguard South Taranaki protects a coastline of approximately 120 nautical miles from Waitotara in the east to Opunake in the west. Volunteers mainly come from Hawera and Patea and last year they rescued 20 people after incidents on the water.
“This funding is really important,” says Charlotte. “Without the help from NZCT and other like-minded organisations we would really struggle to function as we have no government support at a unit level. This grant ensures that our search and rescue equipment is available when we need it to assist people who get into trouble on the water.”
“Thank you NZCT for playing your part in helping us to save lives at sea. The application process is a straightforward, smooth experience.”