We’re tracking the ambulances donated to Ukraine

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ROCHESTER, N.Y. (WHEC) — When News10NBC showed you the new home in Gates for a family of refugees that just arrived from Ukraine, it got us thinking: What happened to all the donations from here to Ukraine, including those ambulances? We’re going to pinpoint them as close as we can.

We learned the ambulances just got through customs in Germany. Now, the Ukrainian Americans here are getting flatbed trucks to drive the rigs closer to the front lines. But the message coming back from Ukraine is now they need a different kind of truck.

About a month into the war in Ukraine, three ambulances from AMR and Monroe were donated to get shipped to Ukraine. We watched the ambulances drive off on their way to the ports in New Jersey. That was three months ago.

Brean: "Where are they right now?"

Dennis Pavlyuk, Roc Maidan: "That’s a good question. Those ambulances recently cleared customs in Germany. And as of this week, we are currently in an arrangement with organizations in Europe to put them on flatbed trailers to get them into Ukraine."

The donated ambulances were already old and the life span of ambulances in the war zone is two to four trips.

"So we don’t want to take some life off of that vehicle if it’s going to come there and be dead on arrival," Pavlyuk said.

"We’ve got about 23 hospital beds that are going to be shipped on Saturday," Myron Kowal said.

Kowal runs the Roc Maidan warehouse for all the donations for Ukraine. He says 75 hospitals are destroyed and he says the word back from Ukraine is the ambulances have become targets. So Kowal says Ukrainians in the fight are now asking for big pickup trucks to carry injured soldiers and citizens to safety. The warehouse in Webster has walkers and wheelchairs and boxes of basic clothing.

"Suture kits are a big deal," Kowal said as he took me through the medical section of the warehouse. "Tourniquets are a big deal."

The Roc Maidan Facebook page posts hundreds of images of donated items in Rochester that made it to the country.

Brean: "Is there a particular picture that means the most to you?"

Dennis Pavlyuk: "The ones with the firefighters. I love it. About 30 to 40 turnout suits that those firefighters are wearing. I might have said this before but I love that it says Rochester on the back."

Want to donate something to Ukraine? Click here.