Councillors support air ambulance campaign

Press Eye - Belfast  Northern Ireland - 23rd July 2015 - ''Finance Minister Arlene Foster is pictured during a meeting with the trustees of Air Ambulance NI Ltd to discuss the setting up of an air ambulance to serve Northern Ireland.''The DUP MLA is pictured with trustees (l-r) Ian Crowe, Peter Quinn and Ray Foran.''Picture by Kelvin Boyes / Press Eye.
Press Eye - Belfast Northern Ireland - 23rd July 2015 - ''Finance Minister Arlene Foster is pictured during a meeting with the trustees of Air Ambulance NI Ltd to discuss the setting up of an air ambulance to serve Northern Ireland.''The DUP MLA is pictured with trustees (l-r) Ian Crowe, Peter Quinn and Ray Foran.''Picture by Kelvin Boyes / Press Eye.
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Causeway Coast and Glens councillors have given their support to calls for a permanent air ambulance service in Northern Ireland.

A notice of motion was brought before Council on Tuesday night by councillors James McCorkell and George Duddy.

The motion said: “That this Council recognises the requirement of an Air Ambulance for Northern Ireland and calls on all Departments within the Northern Ireland Executive to work together to provide an emergency helicopter for the Province as a matter of urgency.”

The notice of motion received the backing of the councillors and the matter will now be discussed at the next Corporate Policy and Resources meeting next month.

Speaking before the meeting the Mayor, councillor Michelle Knight-McQuillan passed on her condolences to the family and friends of Dr John Hinds, who passed away following an accident while providing medical cover at a Skerries 100 practice session.

During his life Dr Hinds campaigned for an air ambulance to help injured people in often remote areas to reach hospital more quickly.

Northern Ireland is the only region of the UK to not have air ambulance cover.

“I would like to pass on my condolences to the family and friends of Dr John Hinds,” said Cllr Knight McQuillan.

“He saved countless lives and helped many in this borough and beyond.

“Doctor John was the first person many riders would see after having an accident, and his presence would reassure them.

“I support the calls for a permanent air ambulance service in the province.

“It would be a fantastic legacy for Dr Hynds and all the hard work he and his colleagues have put in over the years.”

Northern Ireland isnow the only region in the British Isles not to have an airborne emergency service. The Republic has been operating an emergency air ambulance helicopter, based at Athlone, since mid-2012 and more than 1,000 missions undertaken.