Era Helicopters LLC (Era) and Priority 1 Air Rescue Inc. (P1AR) have announced the implementation of a teaming arrangement to jointly provide search and rescue (SAR) and medical evacuation operations in the Gulf of Mexico and overseas. Together, Era and P1AR are now offering US Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) approved full-service SAR/medevac capability and turnkey solutions to offshore oil and gas companies. The P1AR crews, including pilots, hoist operators, rescue swimmers and flight paramedics, will supplement Era’s AW139 and EC225 helicopters dedicated to the programme. The companies stated that these aircraft types have flight performance capabilities to execute deepwater maritime SAR/medevac operations at distances up to 250 nautical miles offshore. This service capability was jointly developed and initiated recently when P1AR completed its class D human external cargo rescue training for Era at the Era Training Center in Lake Charles, Louisiana, US. P1AR lead SAR crewman Bob Watson commented: “The introduction of this type of service symbolises a significant step forward in operational safety in the Gulf of Mexico by offering customers the availability of an incredibly comprehensive helicopter SAR/medevac service to facilitate emergency response.” David Stepanek, Era Helicopters vice-president and chief marketing officer added: “P1AR brings a wealth of hoisting and rescue experience to combine with Era’s well trained flight crews and latest technology SAR-equipped AW139s and EC225s. We are pleased to join with P1AR to provide SAR/medevac and hoisting service to the oil and gas market or wherever these services are needed.” The P1AR SAR aircrews are trained and certified with US National Registry Paramedic licences and are also multi-disciplined as hoist operators, helicopter rescue swimmers and paramedics, also capable of providing ground-based technical rescue support for high-angle rope rescue, worker entrapment and confined-space rescue support on various oil platforms and vessels.