The Wellington Free Ambulance
) provides free to the patient ambulance
An ambulance is a vehicle for transportation of sick or injured people to, from or between places of treatment for an illness or injury, and in some instances will also provide out of hospital medical care to the patient...
services in the Wellington Region
The Wellington region of New Zealand occupies the southern end of the North Island.-Governance:The official Wellington Region, as administered by the Wellington Regional Council covers the conurbation around the capital city, Wellington, and the cities of Lower Hutt, Porirua, and Upper Hutt, each...
of New Zealand.
The ambulance service was created on 9 November 1927 by the mayor of Wellington, Sir Charles Norwood
Sir Charles Norwood , full name Charles John Boyd Norwood, was the twenty-third Mayor of Wellington, New Zealand from 1925 to 1927. He was a local businessman, civic leader, and founder Chairman of the Wellington Free Ambulance...
, and initially operated out of the Old Navals boatshed. The service moved into a purpose built station on Cable Street in 1932, with Lord Bledisloe laying the foundation stone. The board created a long service medal for staff in 1956, for twelve (later ten) years service. In 1994 Prince Charles opened the new ambulance station in Davis Street, Thorndon, after a major fundraising drive.
A WFA officer was accidentally shot in the leg by police during an AOS
The Armed Offenders Squad is a specialist unit of the New Zealand Police designed to "cordon, contain and appeal to" armed and dangerous offenders. As the name explains, they are called upon when conflict with an armed offender has occurred or is considered imminent.The AOS draw upon a varied...
exercise on 27 July 2002.
On 8 September 2005 an ambulance belonging to the service was stolen during a call-out, the vehicle was found crashed on its side at nearby intersection.
Thieves stole $5,000 worth of equipment and caused $15,000 damage to a WFA vehicle in November 2007.
The service annually assists over 40,000 patients in the Wellington Region. The headquarters includes vehicle maintenance facilities, and a communications centre - one of three in the national network. The Life Flight air ambulance service jointly owns an ambulance in Wellington with the WFA.
The cost of running the service in 2006 was $10.8 M. 75% of this cost is met by the Ministry of Health and the Accident Compensation Corporation
The Accident Compensation Corporation is a New Zealand Crown entity responsible for administering the Accident Compensation Act 2001. The Act provides support to citizens, residents, and temporary visitors who have suffered personal injuries....
. The remainder comes from donations and bequests from the public, proceeds from first aid training and supplies, and medical alarms.
the service has the following resources:
- 8 ambulance stations
- 22 ambulances
- 3 4WD rescue vehicles
- 74 full-time paramedics
- 63 volunteer paramedics