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Great North Air Ambulance Service reeling from 30% fuel hike

The Great North Air Ambulance Service (GNAAS) reported a 30% increase in fuel costs for planes alone.

The charity, which operates an emergency helicopter service for the north of England, is entirely dependent on donations and requires a fundraising effort of £6.7million a year to stay in the air .

However, the situation is currently being monitored to determine whether or not the operational target will need to be increased based on current fuel inflation.

The GNAAS service has appealed to the public to help weather the storm of rising fuel prices, with £7,480 raised so far against an initial target of £10,000.

Andy Mawson, director of operations at GNAAS, said the organization was “absolutely blown away” by the generous response from the public after just seven days.

“Rising fuel prices affect us all, so it’s incredibly humbling to see our supporters dig deep to ensure our helicopters and rapid response vehicles can continue to respond to incidents in the North.

“We just want to say a huge thank you to everyone who has supported our appeal because this money will help us be there for the people who need us most,” he said.

GNAAS also reported that it costs around £90 for a tank of fuel per car per night shift, of which one car runs four nights in the North East and another car runs two nights in Cumbria.

The rescue service responded to 1,620 incidents in 2021, including 457 in the Cumbria region, recording the busiest year for the organization on record – with the service expecting a further increase before 2022.

To donate to the service in times of need, visit the GNAAS, Urgent Fuel Fundraiser on Facebook.

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