Having basic first aid skills was key to Jaide Neilson helping a Japanese tourist when he was hit by a car in Rotorua.

It was the first time Jaide had used her first aid skills outside the classroom.

"It was interesting to deal with a real-life scenario."

The Western Heights High School student, 17, was on a shift at Lady Jane's Ice Cream Parlour when the incident on Tutanekai St happened yesterday afternoon.

A customer she had just served told Jaide and another employee a man had been hit by a car. Wth the store's first-aid kit they rushed to help the injured man.


Jaide had done a first aid certificate while on a trades course at Waiariki Bay of Plenty Polytechnic.

Using what she had learnt in the course Jaide made sure the man was not moved in case of further injuries and kept everyone calm until the ambulance arrived.

When asked by the Rotorua Daily Post if she thought everyone should do a first aid certificate Jaide agreed.

"Definitely - it'll help in situations like these."

Local Gabriel Swainson, who saw the incident and also rushed to the man's side, said Jaide was "amazing".

Jaide is hoping to do a nursing course next year at Waiariki.

She said helping the injured man had given her more confidence nursing was what she wanted to do.

A spokeswoman from Waikato District Health Board said the man was in a critical condition in ICU in Waikato Hospital. He was taken there by helicopter late on Thursday night from Rotorua Hospital.

Police confirmed they were called to the incident at 4.46pm yesterday involving a Japanese tourist. Investigations are ongoing.