UK-based Magpas Air Ambulance has selected the AW169 as its new generation helicopter
Flight medics receive pilot training
The Great North Air Ambulance Service (GNAAS) has revealed that its paramedics and pilots recently put their flying skills to the test by training in a helicopter flight simulator. The crew visited Royal Air Force base RAF Linton-on-Ouse during a bi-monthly clinical governance day, with the aim being to help the paramedics learn how to safely land a helicopter in the event of an emergency.
Tim West, a paramedic with the UK-based HEMS charity, said: “Our helicopters have dual controls, so if for any reason the pilot is out of action we can take over and try to make a safe crash landing. The chances are obviously minimal, but it pays to be prepared.” He explained: “Drones have become a big risk, as when we’re up in the air we might encounter a drone which could crash through the window and incapacitate the pilot. Other circumstances could be that the pilot has fainted or had a medical collapse, so we’ll have to handle the controls and safely manoeuvre a helicopter to land it. The training has helped us familiarise ourselves with the controls a bit more.”
Fellow GNAAS paramedic Jamie Walsh said: “We use the clinical governance days to review recent cases, update our clinical training, and look at new clinical developments. The flight simulation training was a good experience, and I was impressed by how life like the simulator was compared to a helicopter. Even though it is a simulator you still tense up when you’re doing it, especially because there are 20 people around you watching what you’re doing, but it was good fun.
— Great North Air Amb (@GNairambulance) October 21, 2017
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