Nightingale Regional Air Ambulance, part of Sentara Healthcare and based in Virginia, US, has recently detailed a near-miss incident that occurred in March 2021 in a bid to raise awareness and promote an air of transparency and safety.
The post, published on Facebook, states: “On the night of March 13, 2021, the Nightingale helicopter was involved in a ‘near miss’ incident while landing at a landing zone (LZ).
“While on final approach the pilot visualized what appeared to be a wire approximately 10 feet outside the rotor disk. At this point, the helicopter was approximately 10 feet from the ground; the pilot stopped forward motion and landed preventing a wire strike.
“This wire was located in the center of the marked LZ and was not noticed by any of the Fire Department members on scene nor the flight crew during the high and low reconnaissance.”
The importance of landing zone awareness
Nightingale has urged readers of the post – which was viewed by over 43,000 people – to share the incident details with their own agency and conduct a former review of LZ operations.
Scott McCain, Team Coordinator at Nightingale, told AirMed&Rescue: “My intention is to make the world of HEMS a safer place for all of us in the industry and prove that transparency is the best way to accomplish this goal.”