03 March 2017
When seconds count, 4WD traction on sand and gravel saves critical time for the team at Surf Life Saving New Zealand (SLSNZ).
Thrifty is a charity partner of SLSNZ and supplies ten 4WD vehicles that assist in essential activities such as search and rescue and transporting volunteer Surf Lifeguards to training at remote beaches.
SLSNZ Lifesaving Services and Education Manager Allan Mundy says Thrifty’s 4WD vehicles also helped speed up the recent roll out of SLSNZ’s national radio network.
‘The rollout required us to drive out to multiple remote sites all around the country on gravel roads, so Thrifty’s 4WDs have saved us considerable time and money.
‘Time is always critical in everything that we do,’ adds Mundy. ‘For example when our Search and Rescue (SAR) coordinators are called in to manage an emergency scene they can access the beach in the 4WDs which helps speed up our outcomes,’ Mundy says.
Training and development is an important part of SLSNZ’s operations and in ensuring safety at more than 80 New Zealand beaches patrolled from Labour weekend to Easter every year.
Famous around the world for its surf breaks – Raglan is New Zealand’s best training ground for volunteer Surf Lifeguards – because of its rugged and challenging conditions.
Inflatable Rescue Boat (IRB) Instructor Gabriel Puckey-Brockelsby from Omanu Beach Surf Life Saving Club in the Bay of Plenty recently helped train six new IRB drivers in Raglan, who are now based in patrols around New Zealand.
‘Because many of the lifeguards are in their teens, they don’t have cars or access to vehicles so we absolutely need the Thrifty vehicles to get them to training held on the other side of the country,’ Puckey-Brockelsby says.
Thrifty Car Rental General Manager Emma Gardiner says Thrifty is proud to partner with SLSNZ and help make more than 1,500 rescues in New Zealand each year possible.
‘Thrifty’s support also means SLSNZ can free up funds and resources for use in other areas such as purchasing essential equipment.
‘We like to think that our partnership with Surf Life Saving New Zealand has made a difference and has helped save lives,’ Gardiner says.
If you’d like to support our heroes of the beach, visit this link to make an online donation.