Buslink has donated a surplus school bus to help with the transportation of sick and injured animals to the Cooberrie Park Wildlife Sanctuary, near Yepoon in Central Queensland.

Buslink staff with Dave and Grant Smedley (Cooberrie owner) and snake

Buslink is regularly updating its fleet of buses. It is then faced with the decision on what to do with the older, fully serviceable vehicles no longer required. Buslink staff came up with the idea to make donations to organisations where they can continue to make a difference.

In late 2018 the Buslink group of companies were acquired by ComfortDelGro Corporation Australia (CDC) . CDC has been remarkable in their commitment to supporting causes that benefit the local communities and fully supports the idea of helping community organisations.

Buslink staff noted a Facebook post around the heroic endeavours of Cooberrie Park Wildlife Sanctuary and Wildlife Rehabilitation HQ Inc. The post explained how they set about to rescue and relocate their animals during the recent horrific fire events which threatened the Yeppoon area in mid-November.

The post reported that staff and friends rescued more than 150 animals, which were then transported to safety near Yeppoon as fires burned nearby. A wide variety of birds, reptiles, crocodiles, koalas and monkeys that were recovering from illness or injury, were among the evacuated animals. The evacuation was described as “Noah’s ark on a bus” as the animals were transported in the park’s specialist bus, while flames and embers glowed around rescuers.

Staff noted that the rescue effort was hampered by Cooberrie’s current bus, which is quite small. They thought that a larger bus may help.
Dave Smedley, Cooberrie’s owner said “We are so grateful to Buslink and cannot thank you enough for thinking about us. This is an incredible offer and it is a wonderful thing Buslink is doing. It will make a huge difference to our sanctuary. Thank you again from everyone at Cooberrie Park Wildlife Sanctuary and Wildlife Rehabilitation HQ Inc”

Jim O’Donnell, Buslink Gladstone Manager, (centre) with Grant Smedley (left) and father Dave.

Dave Smedley and son Grant attended Buslink’s Christmas BBQ at the Gladstone depot on Friday 13th December and took delivery of their bus. Dave and Grant brought along one of the Sanctuary’s residents, a 3m Black Headed Python which was introduced to Buslink staff – some were more excited than others!

The bus is a 1995 model Mercedes Benz school bus with 57 seats and fitted with a Starliner body.

Jim O’Donnell, Buslink’s Gladstone Manager said “When I see the bus on the road I will not be hopping on board to check that everyone has paid the correct fare.”