All Midlands Air Ambulance fleet back in the air
Midlands Air Ambulance Charity has been running since 1991 and operated the Eurocopter EC135 since 2001 with an exemplary safety record. The EC135 is recognised in the air ambulance industry as one of the best aircraft to deliver the very best in patient care.
Our fleet of three Eurocopter EC135 are safety checked as standard on a daily basis and serviced routinely through our contract with Bond Aviation Group, one of the world’s leading providers of mission critical helicopter operations for emergency support services.
Eurocopter, in conjunction with EASA had advised operators of this aircraft type, including Bond Aviation Group, to introduce additional daily checks until further investigations were carried out, due to a fault being found in the main rotor hub-shaft flange on EC135 aircraft in other parts of Europe.
Bond Aviation Group took the decision to temporarily ground their operating fleet while working with Eurocopter to gain confirmation that any fault had been identified and rectified.
No fault was found in any of the Midlands Air Ambulance Eurocopter fleet and we can confirm that all three of the Eurocopter EC135 aircraft run by Midlands Air Ambulance are now operating normally from 7.00am this morning, (9th May 2012).
Midlands Air Ambulance has responded to over 36,000 incidents and is the largest and busiest air ambulance in the UK. Since 1991 the service has responded to over £36,000 missions and will continue to ensure it saves lives.
While investigations were taking place a spare aircraft had been brought into operation and the remaining clinical staff were temporarily redeployed to West Midlands Ambulance Service rapid response vehicles. Additionally our colleagues at Warwickshire and Northamptonshire Air Ambulance and Great Western Air Ambulance were on stand by ensuring uninterrupted coverage of the Midlands Air Ambulance operating region.
Hanna Sebright Chief Executive of Midlands Air Ambulance Charity said; “Safety is always our number one priority for both patients and staff and we understand why the decision was made to temporarily ground the fleet. However, it is important to note that at no time did the region not have access to air ambulance cover and the redeployed air ambulance crews were working in rapid response vehicles attending the needs of the public.
The Charity has been operating for 21 years and has an exemplary record in safety and has saved countless lives. We are very grateful to the public for the continued support they give us to help raise the £6 million needed every year to operate our aircraft. We shall continue to work closely with Bond Aviation Group to ensure the very highest standards in safety and patient care”.