Gerard Campbell |

Hato Hone St John in Gisborne has a new Major Incident Support Team (MIST) vehicle that will bolster the organisation’s emergency response capabilities in the region.

The new truck is thanks to generous grant funding from Grassroots Trust Central and was dedicated at a special ceremony at Hato Hone St John’s Gisborne ambulance station on 19 April.

The event was attended by local Civil Defence staff, Hato Hone St John Order members, local iwi and ambulance staff and volunteers.

The MIST vehicle will be used during major emergencies and public events. It contains bulk medical equipment capable of treating up to 50 patients, stretchers, an inflatable rescue shelter, generator, scene lighting, and vital communications equipment.

Jeremy Gooders, Hato Hone St John District Operations Manager – Central East, says the new truck was a crucial addition to the region’s emergency ambulance fleet.

“We are extremely grateful for this new vehicle and for the continued support of Grassroots Trust.

“The extreme weather events of last year put extreme pressure on emergency services in the region, and this new MIST vehicle will enable us to better respond to emergencies in the region as they arise,” Mr Gooders says.

Hato Hone St John’s Major Incident Support Teams (MIST) provide critical operational support to frontline ambulance staff in areas such as logistics, radio communications, patient administration, welfare and fleet movement. MIST members also support the organisation’s Event Health Services team with large-scale events such as concerts, festivals and sporting events.

Hato Hone St John Volunteer Support Manager – Central East, Trudy Haringa says more volunteers are needed to join the MIST team.

“We’re after people who are positive, practical, calm under pressure and adaptive to change, and they will receive full training up to Coordinated Incident Management System (CIMS) Level 3. This includes risk management and driver training, MIST specific training, and an internationally recognised qualification. Applicants do not need to have clinical experience,” Ms Haringa says.

For more information on becoming a volunteer visit join.stjohn.org.nz or phone Trudy Haringa on 0800 St John (0800 785 646).

Sean Hannan, Chairman of Grassroots Trust Central, says the organisation is proud to support Hato Hone St John across the motu.

“We recognise the significant commitment shown by the staff and volunteers of Hato Hone St John and are pleased to be able to provide this funding with the support of the community."

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