Ambulance attention-getter

Mosgiel's new ambulance in the Dunedin Santa Parade at the weekend. Photo by Gerard O'Brien.
Mosgiel's new ambulance in the Dunedin Santa Parade at the weekend. Photo by Gerard O'Brien.

A new ambulance has been turning heads in Mosgiel.

The ambulance painted bright yellow and green is the first of a new breed of ambulances to join St John in Dunedin.

Along with a new colour, the new St John ambulances feature green and yellow fluorescent panels arranged in a ''battenberg'' design and additional reflective signage.

''We are doing everything we can to be noticed more,'' Mosgiel St John station manager John Baker told Taieri Times.

The new ambulance arrived in Mosgiel last Wednesday, and had been getting a few long looks as it went around Mosgiel to aid of people in need.

The new ambulances replace older ones with more mileage, and it was a matter of timing that Mosgiel was in line for a new ambulance first, Mr Baker said.

A similar one is due in central Dunedin in the next month.

The new ambulance was great to work from, with extra access at the back left side of the vehicles and new, brighter, lighting inside.

St John's ambulance makeover was announced in May.

There are no plans to repaint its 500 ambulances, but each of the 40 new ambulances issued each year from now will be in the new colours.

Paint and fluorescent panels for the two ambulances cost $8000 each.

Future ambulances would get the same colour treatment at half of that cost.

Ambulances cost an estimated $150,000 each, and an additional $50,000 to be fitted with medical equipment.

St John said at the time the changes were done to increase road safety for the public, patients and the St John ambulance crew.

The yellow paint was easily seen in low light, and visible to the colour blind.

New green frontline uniforms are expected to be introduced early next year.

The colour green

Why green you ask? The colour green for Ambulance arose out of the conflict in Northern Ireland . The story goes that as ambulance staff treated both sides of the conflict they needed some protection. At the time Ambulance staff  worn the same black and white uniform as the police. The leaders of both sides meet with Ambulance Service senior management and agreed on the colour green. The Ambulance Service management also agreed to ensure only Ambulance staff would wear green. It later evolved into being an internationally recognised "rescue "colour.

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