An intensive care nurse who spent 15 hours treating coronavirus patients was left devastated after she finished her shift to find her bike had been stolen.
Kathy Miranda finished a long shift in the Intensive Care Unit at Wellington Hospital in New Zealand at 2am on Wednesday.
But when she went to collect her electronic e-bike, worth $1,820, the exhausted nurse realised a thief had cut through the lock and stolen it.
Ms Miranda posted on Twitter and Facebook asking users if she could borrow a bike to get to work and keep helping victims of COVID-19.
‘Feeling empty,’ she wrote.
‘The last thing I needed was for someone to steal my e-bike from the hospital.
‘I’m not sure what to say but any good vibes anyone has to spare, I could really use about now?’
Her friend and colleague Lara Conyers shared the post and said she was ‘disgusted’.
‘[Kathy] is an ICU nurse and an integral member of our covid response team,’ Ms Conyers wrote.
‘She has been working 12-15 hour days in preparation for this pandemic, serving our community and keeping us safe. Today a member of that same community stole from her, and robbed her of her means to commute to work.’
She urged community members to keep an eye out for e-bikes on sale in case it belongs to her friend.
Ms Miranda was inundated with responses from people who wanted to donate money for a new one or who had bikes to spare.
Others slammed the thief as a ‘scumbag’, ‘b***tard’ and ‘rodent’.
Local MP Nicola Willis wrote: ‘This makes me so cross. Please know the rest of us are so grateful to you for the work you are doing and will do for us during this crisis. You deserve much much better than this.’
Another colleague set up a Go Fund Me page which has raised more than $1,200.
A police spokesperson told New Zealand Herald the incident had been reported and police were making enquiries.
Authorities in New Zealand fear cases could soar into the thousands, flooding the healthcare system.
A state of emergency was declared by the New Zealand Minister for Civil Defence Peeni Henare on Wednesday afternoon as the number of infections soared to 205 overnight – a rise of almost 50 per cent.
Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern issued a dire warning to the country as it prepared to go into a month-long lockdown at midnight on Wednesday.
Roads were closed and police began moving around the country with the authority to question people found outside their homes.
Ardern said the measures were tough but necessary.
‘Modelling suggests we could have several thousand cases before we see the measures we’re taking today having an impact,’ she said in a press conference.
‘Breaking the rules could kill someone close to you.
‘Every move you make could be a risk to someone else.’
Director of Civil Defence Emergency Management Sarah Stuart-Black said the emergency was declared due to the ‘unprecedented nature of this global pandemic’.
‘[It will] ensure the government has all the powers it needs to slow the spread of Covid-19 and reduce its impact,’ she said.