UW Med Flight

UW Med Flight

University of Wisconsin Med Flight is an air ambulance service based at University of Wisconsin Hospital in Madison, Wisconsin. Med Flight was established in 1985, and serves patients within a 225-mile radius of Madison. [cite news | last=Wachowski | first=Elizabeth | title=Wisconsin Med Flight Program Celebrates 20 Years | publisher=Wisconsin State Journal | date=2005-12-02 | url=http://publicsafety.com/article/article.jsp?id=2546&siteSection=15 | accessdate=2007-07-29 ] [cite web | url=http://www.uwhealth.org/page.asp?contentid=10773 | title=Emergency Response Teams, UW Health, University of Wisconsin Hospital and Clinics, UW Physicians, Madison | accessdate=2007-07-29 ]


The first operational flight was in April 1985 and carried a heart attack patient from Coloma, Wisconsin who survived. The initial staff was three doctors, six nurses, three pilots and one mechanic. There was no aircraft hanger and maintenance on the aircraft was performed outside with a helipad in the parking lot. There was also some controversy in nearby Shorewood Hills, Wisconsin over noise from the helicopter. 20 years later, it was staffed by a rotating crew of 23 doctors, 12 nurses, eight communications specialists and six pilots and had three helicopters and a ground ambulance. [TIME-TESTED AT 20 ; FOR TWO DECADES, UW MED FLIGHT HAS TAKEN TO THE AIR TO BRING THE HIGHEST LEVEL OF CARE; ELIZABETH WACHOWSKI. Wisconsin State Journal. Madison, Wis.: Dec 1, 2005. pg. A.1] In 2005, an $8 million project created a heliport on the 8th floor rooftop of the hospital replacing the parking lot landing pad and created larger hangars to support three aircraft. [AIR AMBULANCES ; UW MED FLIGHT HAS NEW DIGS ON EIGHTH-FLOOR ROOF; ANITA CLARK. Wisconsin State Journal. Madison, Wis.: Nov 3, 2005. pg. B.1] The ambulance was added in 2004 for inter-hospital transports to reduce costs and free a helicopter for emergency transports. [FOR UW HOSPITAL, ITS FIRST AMBULANCE ; IT WILL ALWAYS HAVE A DOCTOR ON BOARD, AND IT WILL FREE THE MED FLIGHT HELICOPTERS FOR 911 EMERGENCIES.; Lesley Rogers Barrett. Wisconsin State Journal. Madison, Wis.: Aug 6, 2004. pg. B.1]


As of 2008, the Med Flight fleet included two Eurocopter EC 135 helicopters, airreg|N|135UW and airreg|N|235UW. airreg|N|135UW was destroyed in a fatal crash on May 10, 2008. The EC 135 helicopters replaced two Agusta A109E 'Power' helicopters, two of which were airreg|N|1UW and airreg|N|12UW [ [http://www.alecbuck.com/airambulance/mediagallery/album.php?aid=1854 2 A109's N1UW and N12UW depicted with UW med flight livery] .] [ [http://www.dgualdo.it/prod-a109e-01.htm AgustaWestland A109E Power - Production List] .] , in July 2007 at a cost of $4 million each. [cite web | url=http://www.channel3000.com/news/13630888/detail.html | title=UW Hospital Adds 2 Helicopters | accessdate=2007-07-29 ] The helicopters are operated and maintained by Air Methods, formerly CJ Systems Aviation Group. [cite web | url=http://biz.yahoo.com/prnews/080511/lasu004.html?.v=8 | title=Air Methods Corporation Confirms Fatal Accident in Wisconsin | accessdate=2008-05-11 ]


One of the Agusta aircraft was forced to make an precautionary landing in a field in the town of Rutland, Wisconsin on Friday July 28, 2006 after an equipment warning light activated. [MED FLIGHT MAKES EMERGENCY LANDING; Wisconsin State Journal. Madison, Wis.: Jul 29, 2006. pg. B.3]

On May 10, 2008, helicopter airreg|N|135UW, known as Med Flight 1, crashed near La Crosse, Wisconsin, fatally injuring all three crew members. Initial reports indicated that the helicopter "may have flown into a hill and or struck some trees." [cite news | last=Grooms | first=Autumn | title=Three dead in Med Flight helicopter crash | publisher=La Crosse Tribune | date=2008-05-11 | url=http://www.lacrossetribune.com/articles/2008/05/11/breakingnews/03helicopter.txt | accessdate=2008-05-11 ] Impact debris and rotor blade fragments were found near at the top of the 1,160 feet elevation ridgeline about 4.5 miles south of La Crosse Airport. Main debris was located 600 feet below that point around 930 feet elevation. La Crosse Municipal Airport field elevation is 654 feet. [ [http://www.ntsb.gov/ntsb/GenPDF.asp?id=CHI08FA128&rpt=p NTSB preliminary report, ID CHI08FA128] (PDF) ( [http://www.ntsb.gov/ntsb/brief.asp?ev_id=20080520X00702&key=1 text] )]


External links

* [http://www.uwhealth.org/emergencyroom/emergencyresponseteamsmedflightandcheta/10773 Emergency Response Teams - Med Flight and C.H.E.T.A.]

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