Published: 15:46, 05 May 2022
| Updated: 15:48, 05 May 2022
A third convoy of firefighters has left from Kent to provide vital aid to Ukraine.
UK charity Fire Aid and the National Fire Chiefs Council (NFCC) are sending engines and equipment to Ukrainian firefighters dealing with fallout from the conflict.
A further 22 vehicles have started the journey from Ashford to Europe, raising the total to 60.
The donations of vehicles, hoses, helmets, thermal imaging cameras, generators, ladders, rescue equipment and protective equipment and other kit, will help the Ukrainian fire and rescue service on the frontlines of the war.
Their deployment s being supported by funding from the Home Office, Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office, and the FIA Foundation.
It is the third such convoy to leave for the conflict-stricken country in two months, after one on April 21 and the first on March 19.
Chair of the National Fire Chiefs Council, Mark Hardingham commented: “Once again we have seen fire and rescue services, FIRE AID and the wider sector work together to make this happen.
"The situation in Ukraine remains at the forefront of everyone’s mind and to be able to assist is something everyone involved should be incredibly proud of.”
Claire Hoyland, Project Manager of Fire Aid – who have been supporting the efforts –said that she "could never have imagined the scale" of the efforts when they first started.
"The deployment of 60 vehicles has been an incredible achievement by all involved but I must acknowledge our FIRE AID members EASST and Kent Fire and Rescue who have been working in Ukraine now for 10 years," she added.
"The relationships that we have built up with in this time have been critical to the successful deployment of these convoys.
"For us, this is about more than just helping firefighters in a time of desperate need. It is also about helping friends and colleagues who have found themselves on the frontline of a war."