From left: Gordon Ingram, Kate Allen and Lee Salmon of GNAAS in their new kit

From left: Gordon Ingram, Kate Allen and Lee Salmon of GNAAS in their new kit

Lifesaving airborne medics will be protected from the elements thanks to outdoors brand Berghaus.

The Sunderland-based firm has kitted out staff at the Great North Air Ambulance Service.

The air ambulance’s two response teams operate across the North of England, often flying to outdoor enthusiasts in distress in the Cumbria and the North-East.

Berghaus has donated waterproof and insulated jackets from the more specialist end of its range, designed for use in extreme conditions throughout the year. The clothing and other gear handed over to the charity is worth about £30,000.

The Great North Air Ambulance Service operates from bases at Teesside International Airport and Langwathby, near Penrith. Last year, GNAAS air ambulances responded to 1,640 callouts, assisting with many of the region’s most severely injured or ill patients.

As a charity, it relies on financial donations and other support to sustain the services that it provides. Earlier in the year, Gordon Ingram, operations manager and senior paramedic, met Berghaus head of design James Hodgson and category manager Graeme Paige at an event and the three discussed ways in which they could work together.

As a result, Berghaus agreed to supply GNAAS with a set of kit for about 50 personnel, including all the doctors and paramedics who make up its two emergency response teams. The air ambulance staff now have four-season waterproof, down and fleece jackets, along with overtrousers and other items such as holdalls and accessories.

Mr Ingram said: “We work 365 days a year and need to be prepared to face the worse of the elements.

“We simply could not go out and perform effectively as a team without the right kit. This generous gift has ensured that one thing we don’t have to worry about is our clothing as we head out into the unknown of the next mission.”

Mr Paige said: “GNAAS provides a vital service across the North and we know that outdoor enthusiasts are among the many people who are hugely grateful for the work that the paramedics and pilots do so well.

“As a company based in the same region, Berghaus is proud to be able to help the air ambulance service in this very practical way, keeping the team dry and warm so that they can focus on their primary task of saving lives.”

GNAAS needs to raise about £5m every year to continue operating.

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