PennSTAR to replace a BK117C1 with EC145

PennSTAR to replace a BK117C1 with EC145 24 Oct, 12, Source: American Eurocopter

The University of Pennsylvania Health System (UPHS) is boosting its PennSTAR AMS (Air Medical Services) fleet with the purchase of a new EC145.

PennSTAR currently flies three BK117s and four EC135s. The new EC145 is scheduled to be in service by summer 2013, replacing one of the BK117 C1 aircraft.

“PennMedicine and PennSTAR are always looking to improve our air medical transport and patient care capability,” said PennSTAR Flight Team Program Director, Robert Higgins. “After considering the available aircraft, we selected the EC145 based on its proven, safe record, viable economics and our excellent experience for nearly 30 years with American Eurocopter product support. We look forward to fielding the aircraft including the latest safety technology available in spring of next year.”

UPHS includes the prestigious Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania, Penn-Presbyterian Medical Center, and Pennsylvania Hospital, which was established as the nation’s first hospital in 1751 by Benjamin Franklin and Dr. Thomas Bond. The PennSTAR Flight Team is an integral component of the University of Pennsylvania Trauma Network, which includes the Level 1 Trauma Centers at the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania, the St. Luke’s Hospital and Health Network in Bethlehem, Pa., and the Level 2 Trauma Center at The Reading Hospital & Medical Center in Reading, Pa.

The EC145 was selected by PennSTAR for a number of reasons including payload and range capacity, along with the large cabin and useful load ability allowing PennSTAR to transport medical teams and special equipment. Providing operators with multi-mission capability in a medium-class, twin-engine helicopter, the EC145 is powered by two Turbomeca ARRIEL engines. The aircraft’s combination of speed and performance, along with its high-set main and tail rotors, large cabin and rear-loading clamshell doors, has made it the helicopter of choice for a large number of EMS programs in the United States and worldwide.

“PennSTAR has been trying to add an EC145 for some time,” said American Eurocopter Vice President of Commercial Sales and Marketing, Treg Manning. “We applaud their diligence and appreciate the time they invested in researching us and our competition. An organization like PennMedicine does not make these decisions without due diligence and we are proud to be selected to help meet their long-term needs in a challenging business environment.”

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