About | Philips Search and Rescue Trust

Saving Lives, Together.

Our aim is simple – to save lives.

Your rescue helicopter can be airborne in 10 minutes and, in a life or death situation, this speed and agility can make all the difference, with patients able to receive medical treatment whilst en route to a medical facility. The timely assistance that rescue helicopters provide can reduce disability and improve survival.  The sooner treatment begins, the greater the chance of patient recovery.

Philips Search & Rescue Trust (PSRT) is the charity responsible for fundraising and promotion of the North Island’s largest pool of community rescue helicopters.

Encompassing a fleet of rescue helicopters and fixed-wing planes, the service provides air health and rescue services free of charge to the public on a no-fault basis.

The rapid response is powered by an expert crew of Pilots, Crewmen, Intensive Care Paramedics, Doctors, Flight Nurses, and Specialist Crew.

In a life and death situation, it is this speed and agility that can make all the difference, with patients able to receive medical treatment whilst en route to a medical facility.

Dispatched through the 111-call system, our rapid response rescue helicopters bring life-saving equipment, rescue personnel, with full-time Flight Paramedic workforce, all experienced Intensive Care Paramedics (ICP) directly to the patient.

Always rescue ready, your rescue helicopter is an essential emergency service in your community.

Your rescue helicopter can be called to any of the following missions:

  • Search and rescue missions
  • Operations requiring a winch
  • Night operations
  • Time-critical inter-hospital transfers
  • Armed Offender Squad / Land Search and Rescue / NZ Fire

When needed, your rescue helicopter will be there, 24/7, 365 days a year.

Westpac Air Ambulance

Philips Search & Rescue Trust (PSRT) is the charity responsible for fundraising and promotion of the nationally recognised Westpac Air Ambulance, an accredited provider of Level 1 and 2 aero-medical transport services.

Flying bedside to bedside, the highly experienced medical crew can accommodate up to two patients, non-stop, to any location in New Zealand.

Find out more at westpacairambulance.org.nz

Philips Search and Rescue Trust all began with one single act of compassion.

In 1985, two senior Philips executives and a pilot lost their lives in a light aircraft accident, just south of Turangi. Philips instigated at that time, what was and probably still is, New Zealand’s largest privately organised search, which eventually found the lost aircraft.

After their loss, it became apparent to Philips that if a rescue service had been available, their executives and pilot may have survived. So, as a legacy to the country, Philips endowed what was to become Philips Search and Rescue Trust (PSRT), with the objective of providing the highest possible standard of air rescue and emergency helicopters to serve the people of the central North Island and wider areas of New Zealand.

Flight operations commenced in 1985, with a single-engine, part-time helicopter based in Taupo, which quickly gained a reputation as an effective operational unit, particularly within the specialist search and rescue field.

In October 1987, PSRT was made a dedicated, full-time rescue service, and is now the charity responsible for the North Island’s largest group of rescue helicopters.

Over 30 years on from that fatal flight, PSRT continues to provide rescue helicopter services, free of charge to patients, funded largely by the communities we operated in.

Over 35,000 people owe their lives to PSRT rescue helicopters.

Steph

Crewman

Sam

Pilot

Michelle

Crewman

Phil

Pilot

Diane

Intensive Care Paramedic

Paul

Base Manager / Pilot

Steven

Intensive Care Paramedic

Hugo

Clinical Development Manager

Muir

Medical Director

Mo

Crewman

Stu

Crewman

Dave

Crewman

Rick

Intensive Care Paramedic

Brody

Intensive Care Paramedic

Loren

Pilot

Barry

Pilot - Training Manager

Dan

Pilot

Charlie

Chief Pilot

Simon

Intensive Care Paramedic

Fergus

Pilot

Kat

Crewman

Muir

Medical Director

Ben

Crewman

Byron

Crewman

Spence

Pilot

Tony

Intensive Care Paramedic

Andy

Intensive Care Paramedic

Felicity

Intensive Care Paramedic

Liam

Base Manager/Pilot

Todd

Pilot

Hendry

Pilot

Iain

Crewman

Dave

Intensive Care Paramedic

Gillian

Intensive Care Paramedic

Bill

Crewman

Logan

Intensive Care Paramedic

Jess

Crewman

Muir

Medical Director

Simon

Pilot

Rob

Intensive Care Paramedic

Michael

Intensive Care Paramedic

Dave

Crewman

Bernie

Pilot

Aeron

Crewman / Crewman Trainer

Nat

Base Manager / Pilot

Mark

Crewman

Rob

Intensive Care Paramedic

Tony

Intensive Care Paramedic

Libbie

Crewman

James

Intensive Care Paramedic

Muir

Medical Director

Schalk

Intensive Care Paramedic

Adam

Pilot

Leigh

Crewman

Rene

Intensive Care Paramedic

Mark

Pilot

Ben

Intensive Care Paramedic

Nigel

Intensive Care Paramedic

Ross

Pilot

Chris

Chief Operating Officer

Lance

Pilot

Graeme

Base Manager / Crewman

Neil

Crewman

David Wickham

Secretary

Errol Millar

Executive Chairman

Terry Burcher

Trustee

Patricia Bayley

Trustee

Stewart Davies

Trustee

Victoria Marland

Digital Marketing Coordinator

Jenny Barris

Finance Processor

Renee Bosley

Office Support & Customer Service Specialist

Kirsten Tye

Project Manager

Delaney Newton

Marketing Assistant/ Intern

Samantha Leuthart-Tomlinson

Fundraising Assistant

Alexandra Paley

Marketing Assistant/Intern

Whitney Smith

Fundraising Manager

Jex Moore

Fundraiser

Angela Cranfield

Finance and Administration Manager

Sharni Weir

Marketing Manager

Vanessa Richmond

Group Manager Fundraising, Marketing & Communications

We Need You

Your support ensures rescue helicopters are available to your community.
Your rescue helicopter can be airborne in 10 minutes and, in a life or death situation, this speed and agility can make all the difference. The timely assistance that rescue helicopters provide can reduce disability and improve survival – the sooner treatment begins, the greater chance of patient recovery.

We are partially funded by a government contract with National Ambulance Sector Office (NASO). We rely heavily on the generosity of sponsors and the community to help fund the shortfall that allows us to be rescue ready 24/7, 365 days of the year. This crucial financial support ensures our rescue helicopter can continue to bring life-saving equipment, rescue personnel, and intensive care paramedics directly to the patient.

Without your support, your rescue helicopter would not be able to remain operational on a 24/7, 365 day a year basis. This could mean a serious delay in people being rescued or transported to hospital for urgent treatment.

Support your rescue helicopter and make a lifesaving difference.

Saving Lives, Together.

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