Chip in for the chopper!

Ballina Shire residents are being asked to support the annual Westpac Rescue Helicopter Annual Appeal.

During the week over 170,000 specially marked donation envelopes are being delivered to letterboxes across the flight region which stretches from Tweed in the north, south to Nambucca and Macksville and west to Tenterfield and Glen Innes.

The Service is hoping to raise over $150,000 from the Appeal.

Chief Pilot Lynton Beggs said although the service is free, saving lives comes at a cost.

“The average cost to perform one mission is $8,500 and it costs $30,000 to train a new crew member,” he said.

“We need to raise over 60% of our annual $6.5 million operating budget from the business, corporate and community sectors. We are appealing to our supportive community to once again donate to help us continue to save lives.”

People can also donate by phoning the Helibase on 6627 4444 or visiting the website

PICTURE: Chief Pilot with Westpac Life Saver Rescue Helicopter Lynton Beggs holding the Annual Appeal envelope that is being delivered into letterboxes across the region this week.

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