Duke Life Flight to upgrade from EC135 to EC145

Duke Life Flight to upgrade from EC135 to EC145 19 Oct, 11, Source: American Eurocopter

American Eurocopter is pleased to announce that Duke University Hospital’s Life Flight has ordered two EC145 helicopters. These helicopters will replace the program’s two EC135 aircraft and provide increased capabilities for the patients they serve.

“Duke Life Flight has been a long-time customer,” said Treg Manning, Vice President of Sales for American Eurocopter. “The EC145’s combination of size, performance and advanced technologies is a good fit for the program and we are very pleased that Duke Life Flight has chosen another Eurocopter model for their fleet.”

Duke Life Flight was North Carolina’s first hospital-based helicopter service and has been providing emergency air transport since 1985. The program’s coverage area includes all of North Carolina, as well as portions of South Carolina, Virginia, West Virginia, and Tennessee.

“We have been very happy with our leased EC135s, but have decided to invest in the long-term sustainability of our program and purchase the EC145s,” said Henry Ward, Administrative Director, Duke Life Flight. “The EC145 has a much larger cabin, which is important for the type of specialized equipment we carry, plus it allows us to load a full-size stretcher and have head-to-toe access to our patients.”

In addition to the spacious interior, the EC145 delivers additional power and performance. Life Flight’s critical care helicopters serve a 200-air mile radius, and the new helicopters will provide Duke Life Flight with additional carrying capacity and range. “With the EC145s, we will be able to accommodate more equipment, larger patients, and expand to three clinicians when needed. This allows us to support a wider variety of missions and deliver our patients the care they require.”

The EC145, powered by two Turbomeca ARRIEL engines, offers a fast cruise speed and excellent performance. Its high set main and tail rotors, rear-loading clamshell doors, large cabin, extra payload capacity, unmatched visibility and additional safety features have made it the helicopter platform of choice for EMS missions in the United States and worldwide.

Over the past 25 years, Life Flight has grown from a single helicopter to two helicopters and four ground ambulances. They currently lease two EC135 T2+ helicopters that are operated by Air Methods.

About American Eurocopter

American Eurocopter is the U.S. affiliate of Eurocopter, the largest helicopter manufacturer in the world, and a subsidiary of EADS North America Holdings, the North American operations of EADS, the second largest aerospace and defense company in the world. American Eurocopter is a helicopter manufacturer and markets, sells and supports the broadest range of civil and para-public helicopters offered by any manufacturer. The product line represents the most cost-effective, technologically-advanced helicopters, ranging from light single to heavy twin, serving all markets and missions. American Eurocopter’s headquarters and main facility are in Grand Prairie, TX, with a large manufacturing and production facility in Columbus, MS.

Photo of the announcement ceremony at American Eurocopter’s booth at AMTC 2011

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