Light horse field ambulance

A light horse field ambulance was an Australian World War I military unit whose purpose was to provide medical transport and aid to the wounded and sick soldiers of a Australian Light Horse brigade.

Typically an ambulance was commanded by a Lieutenant Colonel. All officers of the ambulance were medical doctors or surgeons. Dental units were often attached to the ambulance as well.

The ambulance was divided into two sections, referred to as the Mobile Section and the Immobile Section. The role of the Mobile Section was to travel with the brigade into combat, establish a Dressing Station, retrieve the wounded by stretcher or cart and transport them to the Dressing Station. The role of the Immobile Section was to establish and operate a Receiving Station, to which wounded were dispatched from the Dressing Station. The ambulance's surgeons would operate on the wounded at the Receiving Station. From the Receiving Station, sick and wounded were evacuated first to the Casualty Clearing Station and ultimately to a Base Hospital.


The light horse field ambulances operated in the Middle East theatre; Egypt, the Sinai peninsula, Palestine and Syria. The methods used to transport the wounded had to operate effectively in the sandy, dusty environment.

; Stretcher : As in infantry field ambulances, stretchers were used for transport over short distances, rough terrain or when bearer animals could not be safely employed due to enemy fire.

; Cycle stretcher : Unpopular and ineffective, the use of cycle stretchers was abandoned after the Gaza battles.

; Sand cart : The mainstay of the transport section was the sand cart, featured wide steel rims and was designed to run over soft sand and drawn by 6 horses or mules. It normally carried 3 stretcher cases. The sand cart was poorly suited to operating on the hard, rough ground of Palestine and Syria, and breakdowns were frequent.

; Sand sledge : Used to transport one stretcher case over sand, pulled by two horses.

; Light ambulance wagon : Drawn by a four horse team, the light ambulance wagon was designed by Surgeon Colonel W.D.C. Williams. Wagons of this type were taken to Egypt by some of the field ambulance units during the early days of World War I.

; Camel cacolet : The camel cacolet was used to carry wounded over long distances on rough terrain that was impassable to wheeled transport. Two types of cacolet were used; the sitting and the lying down type. A pair of patients would be mounted on the camel, either side of the camel's hump.

ee also

*Military unit
*Field ambulance
*Australian Army Medical Units, World War I

Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Australian Light Horse — were mounted troops with characteristics of both cavalry and mounted infantry. They served during the Second Boer War and World War I. The Australian 4th Light Horse Brigade at the Battle of Beersheba in 1917 made what is reputedly the last… …   Wikipedia

  • Ambulance — For other uses, see Ambulance (disambiguation) …   Wikipedia

  • Ambulance emergency response vehicle — Not to be confused with flying car. Ambulance emergency response car, built on a Volvo V70 in Sweden An ambulance emergency response vehicle is a vehicle operated by an emergency medical service to respond to medical emergencies either in… …   Wikipedia

  • Light Dragoons — Infobox Military Unit unit name=The Light Dragoons caption=Cap badge of the Light Dragoons dates=1 December 1992 country=United Kingdom branch=Army type=Line Cavalry command structure=Royal Armoured Corps role=Formation Reconnaissance size= One… …   Wikipedia

  • Air ambulance — A Eurocopter EC 145 of Switzerland s Rega air rescue service. An air ambulance is an aircraft used for emergency medical assistance in situations where either a traditio …   Wikipedia

  • Motorcycle ambulance — Motorcycle ambulances are a type of emergency vehicle which either carries a solo paramedic or first responder to a patient; or is used with a trailer or sidecar for transporting patients. A motorcycle ambulance is able to respond to a medical… …   Wikipedia

  • Australian Army Medical Units, World War I — Field Ambulance 1st Division (Australia)* 1st Australian Field Ambulance (New South Wales) * 2nd Australian Field Ambulance (Victoria) * 3rd Australian Field Ambulance2nd Division (Australia)* 5th Australian Field Ambulance (New South Wales) *… …   Wikipedia

  • Occupation of the Jordan Valley (1918) — Australian Imperial Force (AIF) Canteen in the Jordan Valley The British Empire s occupation of the Jordan Valley occurred during the Sinai and Palestine Campaign of World War I, beginning after the Capture of Jericho in February when the… …   Wikipedia

  • First Australian Imperial Force dental units — The First Australian Imperial Force was one of the first military forces to care for soldiers teeth. 118 Dental Units were raised through World War I.Dental UnitsThe dental units were the smallest units in the AIF, consisting of only four men: a… …   Wikipedia

  • Rupert Downes — Infobox Military Person name=Rupert Downes lived=10 February 1885 Death date and age|1945|3|5|1885|2|10|df=yes placeofbirth=Mitcham, South Australia placeofdeath= near Cairns, Queensland caption=Major General Rupert Downes nickname=… …   Wikipedia

Share the article and excerpts

Direct link
Do a right-click on the link above
and select “Copy Link”

We are using cookies for the best presentation of our site. Continuing to use this site, you agree with this.