9 Jul 2013

Thieves target emergency service gear

12:45 pm on 9 July 2013

Some emergency services in Auckland have been targeted in a spate of rescue equipment thefts. and staff say it will be hard to do their jobs without the gear.

On Sunday, firefighters from the Waiuku Volunteer Fire Brigade on their way to a callout found some high-visibility jackets, two hand-held radios and a defibrillator were missing.

Surf lifesaving clubs have also been hit, with a jetski worth about $20,000 found missing on Friday.

In May, three quad bikes and two inflatable rescue boat engines worth $60,000 were stolen.

Surf Life Saving's northern region spokesperson, Tom Burgess, says the jetski stolen in the latest theft is vital during the summer when it's involved in close to 100 rescues, assisting seven different patrols: it could be the difference, he says, between life and death for someone.

Mr Burgess says they'll find it hard to replace the gear in time for summer.