Two Hampshire firefighters join convoy from Kent delivering life-saving aid to Ukraine

190322 UKRAINE CONVOY 1 MERIDIAN
Crew from Hampshire & Isle of Wight Fire and Rescue Service helped to pack up the donations Credit: Hampshire & Isle of Wight Fire and Rescue Service

Two firefighters from Hampshire have joined a convoy of more than 60 firefighters, delivering life-saving aid to rescue workers in Ukraine.

Watch Manager Daryll Pynigar and Crew Manager Spencer Harrison, from Isle of Wight Fire and Rescue Service, are transporting equipment, protective clothing and medical supplies, across the UK.

UK charity Fire Aid and the National Fire Chiefs Council (NFCC) sent an initial delivery to the country on March 11.

The second convoy, consisting of more than 5,000 items of donated kit from fire services across the UK, left Ashford in Kent on Saturday morning.

Watch Manager Daryll Pynigar and Crew Manager Spencer Harrison are transporting equipment and supplies across the UK Credit: Hampshire & Isle of Wight Fire and Rescue Service

The equipment including, 20 fire engines, thermal imaging cameras and thousands of sets of PPE, are among the items being taken to Poland and then into Ukraine.

The mission has been organised and is being led by the charity Fire-Aid and the National Fire Chiefs Council.

Last week, firefighters from across the county collected, packed and delivered extra kit, used by Hampshire and Isle of Wight Fire and Rescue Service, to be donated.

Area Manager Jason Avery said: "When we heard about the work being carried out by Fire-Aid and the NFCC to coordinate a convoy of surplus equipment to Ukraine, we knew we wanted to help in any way we could.

"Our core role is to help and save lives and firefighters on the frontline in Ukraine are in desperate need. It has been amazing to see fire and rescue services from across the UK coming together to help."

Last week, firefighters from across the county packed extra kit to be donated Credit: Hampshire & Isle of Wight Fire and Rescue Service

Daryll, who is an on-call support officer and a firefighter at Bishop’s Waltham, said: "We’ve all seen what’s happening in Ukraine and have been touched by the situation.

"Seeing what the firefighters out there are dealing with every day means we want to help in any way we can. The fire service is one community, no matter where you are in the world."

Eastleigh-based Spencer added: "Our job is to help people. This convoy means vital aid will get to where it is needed most, and we hope it makes a difference."

Daryll and Spencer are both members of the HIWFRS Urban Search and Rescue (USAR) team and UK International Search and Rescue (UKISAR).

The deployment of donations is being supported by funding from the Home Office, Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office and the FIA Foundation, as well as through a public appeal via JustGiving.