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This was the quandary facing Omarama emergency services when sometimes spending many hours at a crash or days fighting a fire in a remote places with no toilet.
So Waitaki rural fire officer based at Omarama, Lex Perriam, came up with a bright idea - why not buy a truly portable "port-a-loo" that could be towed.
An example of being caught short was a truck crash in the Lindis Pass last November when the Omarama Co-response and fire units were on-site for about 13 hours.
Relief arrived on Saturday with the delivery of the portable toilet on a trailer, funded by $5000 from the New Zealand Community Trust which distributes money from pub poker machines, including from the Omarama Hotel.
The toilet will be used by the Omarama Fire Brigade, Waitaki Rural Fire, Civil Defence, the Omarama Co-response unit, Upper Waitaki Search and Rescue and Victim Support.