Rescue chopper gets a facelift

SASHA BORISSENKO
Last updated 12:58 08/04/2014

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The Nelson Marlborough Rescue Helicopter has a new distinctive red and white paint job.

Nelsonians can now know "we are not the Westpac Rescue Helicopter, we are the Nelson Marlborough Rescue Helicopter", said pilot and base manager Tim Douglas-Clifford.

While the helicopter was undergoing a scheduled maintenance inspection last month, the crew thought it was about time to give it a facelift.

It took three weeks to painstakingly sand back the panels.

The helicopter was originally red and yellow because it was once owned by Westpac Australia.

The maintenance and repainting was a good opportunity to "put a stop to the confusion in the market place", Douglas-Clifford said.

"We are not the Westpac helicopter, we are the Nelson Marlborough Rescue Helicopter, which is very much a community helicopter."

Since April last year the Nelson-based helicopter was responsible for taking care of Nelson, Marlborough, Tasman and Upper Buller.

Nelson Marlborough Rescue Helicopter Trust general manager Paula Muddle said the new paint job was a nice fresh start.

She has now invited public feedback about a new potential rescue helicopter logo. "Until we have a naming sponsor, let's get the community to come up with ideas.

"It is funded by the community so we want to give the community an opportunity to put in input into the branding and design of it," Muddle said.

The new insignia is to be put in place before next month when the rescue helicopter will celebrate its May Awareness Month.

For more information see facebook.com/NelsonMarlboroughRescueHelicopter.

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