STAT MedEvac continues the upgrade of its fleet with the addition of five American Eurocopter twin-engine aircraft – three EC135 T2e helicopters and two EC145 helicopters – which are part of an ongoing strategy at STAT to continually upgrade its fleet with the latest aircraft and the newest technology.
STAT MedEvac took delivery of the aircraft from April to June of this year with all being placed into service following their completion by Metro Aviation. STAT has been a Eurocopter customer since 1984 and was the first air medical provider to operate the EC135 in the United States back in1997.
“As we upgrade our helicopters, we always thoroughly evaluate the aircraft available,” said Doug Garretson, President and Chief Executive Officer of STAT MedEvac. “We chose the EC135s and the EC145s from American Eurocopter. It comes down to product performance and support. They currently are the best products for our missions and the team at American Eurocopter works with us to help ensure that our aircraft are available to meet the needs of our crews and our customers.”
STAT MedEvac now has a fleet of 21 aircraft consisting of 14 EC135s and seven EC145s. Throughout the development of the fleet, STAT has developed a strategic upgrade and long-term financial plan that allows it to invest in the newest aircraft and best technology. These new aircraft are being phased into the fleet to help ensure that STAT has the helicopters and the tools to provide its essential services.
“American Eurocopter enjoys a near 30 year relationship with STAT Medevac,” said American Eurocopter Vice President of Commercial Sales and Marketing, Treg Manning. “They have grown from a single ship, VFR operation to the largest, and one of the premier, twin engine, IFR air medical programs in the country. STAT has continued to enhance their intense focus on safety while transitioning to their own part 135 and a 21-aircraft operation. We are truly proud to have been part of this evolution and their success.”
Both the EC135 and the EC145 were designed to meet the unique requirements of operators in several industries. Because of their cabin size, flexibility, performance and reliability, the aircraft have become preferred helicopters in a variety of industries in the United States, particularly in the air medical services industry. The EC135 and the EC145 share similar characteristics and their common cockpit layouts and technology can add up to operational cost savings and increased training efficiency within an organization like STAT MedEvac.
“We have standardized on the EC135 and EC145 platforms because they are the products that best meet our needs and because of the additional efficiencies we have been able to establish,” explains Garretson. “Using a common helicopter platform allows us to more effectively manage our fleet’s maintenance program. We are also able to cross-train all our pilots on both aircraft, which helps ensure maximum flexibility in scheduling and personnel availability.”
STAT MedEvac was the first helicopter and HEMS FAA Part 135 air carrier to apply and be accepted into the FAA’s Aviation Safety Action Program and currently is the only HEMS operator to have obtained the ARGUS Platinum rating for safety. STAT’s fleet operates from 17 bases in Pennsylvania, Ohio, Maryland, and Washington, D.C. These regional bases link rural and community health resources with advanced tertiary care centers and provide quick access to advanced care. STAT MedEvac, a service of the Center for Emergency Medicine of Western Pennsylvania, Inc., is directed by a consortium of hospitals that include: UPMC Presbyterian Shadyside, Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh of UPMC, and UPMC Mercy Hospital.
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