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From rescued to rescuer

Crewman Joseph reveals how he was rescued by our team!
Joseph Huggins - Rescued to Rescuer

After being rescued by our Westpac Rescue Helicopter, Joseph joined the crew of our Air Ambulance Plane.

How did your plight begin?

I was kayaking near Plimmerton with a friend when the weather became nasty with high winds and rough seas.

What happened next?

My friend got rolled by a huge wave and lost his kayak. I managed to tow it back to him but another wave ripped it away as I was passing it over. He was treading water and gave me a look I’ll never forget. I saw fear in his eyes and knew things were getting fairly serious.

We tried various approaches to get us both to shore on my kayak, but it wasn’t possible. We were stuck hanging onto my kayak, continuously being thrown around under water by waves and rapidly getting cold and tired.

How did you feel when the helicopter arrived?

Seeing and hearing the chopper and suddenly being filled with faith that we would be removed from danger was a huge relief.

Did you get a hard time about being rescued when you started work here?

I’ve kept it fairly quiet but brought it up briefly to find out who was on duty that day so I could thank them personally.

I suspect this article will foster some healthy ribbing around the base!

Seeing and hearing the chopper and suddenly being filled with faith that we would be removed from danger was a huge relief.

How have you been finding your job as a Life Flight crew person?

It’s challenging and very rewarding. You never know what your next shift will bring.

Every patient and their family are different so you need to adapt and problem solve at all times of the day or night, in various weather conditions, and at times in tense circumstances.