Road crash team in winning form

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The Wanaka Road Crash Rescue Team is continuing its winning streak, becoming the Otago-Southland road crash rescue champions at the competition in Mossburn recently.

The team, made up of members of the Wanaka Volunteer Fire Brigade, is at the top of its game, becoming the Australasian road crash rescue champions for the second year in a row only a few weeks ago.

Team members hope to continue their strong performance at the World Rescue Challenge in La Rochelle, France, which starts on September 12.

The team members heading to France are Tony Wellman, Jarrod Wellman, Mark Strang, Rob Thorp, Jodie Rainsford and Travis Purnell, accompanied by Ranfurly Chief Fire Officer James Hazlett, who is going as team manager.

Team leader Tony Wellman said he had just been given the information on the challenges they would undertake at the competition – a 10-minute medical event, where there might or might not be a patient trapped by a limb; a 20-minute extraction where one patient was trapped; and a complex extraction with at least one trapped patient, with only 30 minutes to get them out.

“They only just sent me the rules yesterday, so I think they would have done that for everyone,” Mr Wellman said.

The team would be competing against more than 20 rescue groups from all over the world, and for prizes of rescue equipment worth

An exhibition running alongside the competition would enable the team to view some cutting-edge rescue equipment and have training in the latest techniques.

Mr Wellman said he wanted to thank all those who had raised funds to enable them to travel to France.

“Heaps of people have come to the party for us.”