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Safety first aboard the ML Egeria

ACCESS to essential first aid has now become easier for crew members and passengers of the ML Egeria following the purchase of an Automatic External Defibrillator (AED).

The AED purchase was made possible with a $1,850 grant through the Premier’s Discretionary Fund.

Ms Petrusma, who officially handed over the grant, said that apart from its role as official launch to the Governor of Tasmania, ML Egeria was available to charter by community groups or organisations, as well as private citizens.

“Many of these charters consist of groups of elderly citizens who, because of their age, could be subject to sudden illnesses and attacks,” she said.

“And one area where elderly citizens are particularly exposed is with heart problems.

“That is why it is great to be able to provide the funds to fit an AED from the Premier’s Discretionary Fund, because it is vital to ensure the crew can assist in the event of a cardiac episode during a cruise.

“The ML Egeria is managed by a group of dedicated volunteers who undertake all of the maintenance of the vessel, as well as acting as crew when the vessel is being used by the Governor or for a charter.

“These volunteers can now be confident they can effectively respond to a medical event with the AED on board during a charter or cruise.”

Motor Yacht Club of Tasmania (MYCT) manager Julius Fitzgerald said all crew appreciated the funding from the Tasmanian Government.

He said it was essential that the vessel had an AED on board, along with crewmembers that were trained in its use.

“The income generated by the charters is used solely for the maintenance and upkeep of the vessel,” he said.

“In the 10-plus years that the vessel has been owned and operated by the MYCT, nearly $200,000 has been spent to restore the vessel.

“Last season the vessel completed some 80 charters and is on track to do a similar number this season.

“This equates to more than 2000 passengers, so the availability of an AED is considered essential.”

Caption: From left, MYCT manager Julius Fitzgerald, Liberal Member for Franklin Jacquie Petrusma, MYCT commodore John Hebbink and ML Egeria crew member Nigel Grey.