Harcourts supports lighting upgrade for helipad in Mahurangi East

By andreasvendsen on December 9, 2014

Ross McFarlane Colin Hair Christine Kyle Richard Willcock low res

New helipad lighting at the Mahurangi East Fire Station is helping helicopters to land safely.

Imagine it is late at night. The Westpac helicopter has airlifted an injured hiker from a remote track on the Mahurangi Peninsula and the helicopter is heading inland to connect to land transport. The pilot hits the trigger and suddenly out of the darkness the helipad lights at Mahurangi East Fire Station are ignited, guiding the pilot and injured passenger safely in to land.

Mahurangi East Fire Station Officer, Richard Wilcock, says this type of scenario is why it was important for the helipad at Mahurangi East Fire Station to undergo a lighting upgrade when the existing lighting became flooded and was no longer operational.

The replacement lighting was financed by the Mahurangi Community Trust, with support from local real estate group Harcourts.

Representatives from Harcourts Warkworth and Snells Beach visited the Mahurangi East Fire Station last week to present a cheque for $5000 to the Mahurangi Community Trust for the replacement lighting. The grant was made via the Harcourts Foundation, Harcourts’ charitable arm, which provides financial support to local non-profit community groups.

Richard Wilcock says the helipad at Mahurangi East can be used up to three times a week, so when the existing lighting became water logged, it was essential it was replaced. The new LED lighting enables helicopters such as those used by Westpac Rescue and Rural Fire to land safely at night.

“The upgrade also includes the installation of a new strobe light to illuminate the windsock, which is used by pilots to gauge wind direction and speed when landing,” Richard Wilcock says.

“With 75% of around 180 call outs this year being medical related incidents, the new helipad lighting is going to make a big difference to pilots’ ability to land safely.

Harcourts Warkworth and Snells Beach business owner Colin Hair says Harcourts is incredibly proud to support community projects such as the lighting upgrade at Mahurangi East Fire Station.

“We believe that a strong sense of community is what makes New Zealand a great place to live and work, so we’re very happy to be able to support the Mahurangi Community Trust and the helipad lighting project. The Harcourts Foundation is funded by the generosity of Harcourts employees who donate their time and money to support their local communities.”

Chair of the Mahurangi Community Trust, Christine Kyle, says the tight-knit Mahurangi East community is well-known for rallying together when support is needed.

“We’re incredibly grateful for the support from Harcourts. The new helipad lighting is going to make a big difference to our emergency services agencies that do a wonderful job supporting this community and its many visitors.”

The Harcourts Foundation was established in 2008 and has raised almost three million dollars for community projects throughout New Zealand and the world.


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