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Great news this week – the Emergency Response wheelchairs arrived at the Handicap International and Johanniter Emergency Response depots in Dubai and Frankfurt.

The process of getting the wheelchairs to this point has taken a while longer than we had anticipated; demonstrating why we need these products to be situated in the depots ready to be deployed when needed.

The wheelchairs were factory ready in April, but as it was the first production run we sent a Motivation technician to inspect the batch, to check the products were complete and consistent.

Fig.1 Emergency Response wheelchairs in the production factory

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Once he was satisfied, the Motivation logistics team took over, dealing with the shipping agent and preparing loading plans for the containers. The shipping agent moved the boxes to the port in Shanghai and prepared all the necessary shipping paperwork. Customs inspections are carried out at the port of origin and sometimes at the destination port.

Johanniter has their own logistics centre in Frankfurt where they are storing the wheelchairs until needed. Handicap International uses the UN Humanitarian Response Depot in Dubai; a facility to support strategic stockpiling by the humanitarian community in order to reinforce their capacity to respond to emergencies. The wheelchairs are now being fixed onto pallets as they may well need to travel to their final destination by air.

Fig 2. Johanniter Logistics Centre

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So we’ve reached an exciting point in the implementation point with the wheelchairs ready to be deployed. We will now be watching events closely over the next few months, to identify a situation where we will implement an emergency wheelchair response.

Sarah Sheldon

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