Yorkshire Air Ambulance 'appalled' as vital equipment is stolen while crew deal with emergency
Air ambulance bosses have spoken of their disgust after a vital piece of equipment was stolen while crew members were responding to an emergency.
Yorkshire Air Ambulance said it was ‘appalled’ to hear a flight helmet worth nearly £3,000 had been taken from the back of its helicopter while it answered a 999 call in Shipley on Thursday night.
The helmet was eventually found and returned but the charity said it was too badly damaged and would need to be repaired.
In a statement issued yesterday, Yorkshire Air Ambulance said: “We were appalled to hear that one of our valuable flight helmets was stolen from the back of our helicopter whilst our crew were responding to an emergency 999 call last night in Shipley.
“We understand that a group of youths were involved, and cannot comprehend why they felt it necessary to take such a vital piece of our equipment.
“Our flight helmets are specialist and vital pieces of equipment all our crews wear in flight. Not only are they worn for protection and safety purposes, they are also worn so the crews can communicate with each other in flight. Each helmet is bespoke to our crew members and costs in the region of £2,700.
“Unfortunately it looks like there has been too much damage done to this helmet and it will now need replacing. As an independent charity which relies on charitable donations to help fund our vital work, having to replace costly items of equipment that have been unnecessarily damaged for no justifiable reason is extremely disheartening.
“We would, however, like to thank the kind people in Shipley that managed to locate the helmet and return it to the crew, and also to West Yorkshire Police who have been of great assistance.”
The charity has since thanked members of the public for their ‘overwhelming’ support and generous donations.
Writing on Facebook, it said: “Thank you everyone for your support over this – we’re overwhelmed with all the comments & shares #yaalove.”
It added: “Thank you to everyone who has made a donation – we have had some very generous pledges this afternoon.”