Medical helicopter crash kills four in Moldova

Image: Library image (SMURD)

On 1 June, an air ambulance helicopter crashed in Moldova, killing the four crew members onboard. The aircraft, which was operated by Romanian emergency service SMURD, came down in fog and rain on the outskirts of Haragâş. The crew comprised a pilot, co-pilot, doctor and medical assistant, said Moldovan Deputy Health Minister Oleg Craciun.

According to the Romanian Department for Emergencies, Moldova’s Aviation Authority lost contact with the EC135 crew at around 14:23 hrs. The wreckage was located by forces on the ground in a wooded area at around 15:00 hrs.

Earlier that day, the team had flown an 85-year-old woman suffering from bronchopneumonia to Moldova’s capital Chișinău. The helicopter, which was manufactured in August 2014 and last inspected this February, was en route to pick up a 64-year-old stroke patient in Cahul when the accident occurred.

Raed Arafat, founder and head of SMURD, expressed his condolences to the families and friends of the crew members.

SMURD has conducted HEMS missions in Moldova since 2014 under a cross-border co-operation agreement.

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