7-Aug-2013 Source: Air Methods
Air Methods Corporation AIRM -2.36% , the global leader in air medical transportation, today announced its fleet of 368 air medical helicopters is fully outfitted with night vision goggle (NVG) capability. With this milestone, Air Methods’ fleet is now the largest civilian helicopter fleet in the world to be fully outfitted with NVG technology. NVGs enhance visibility during night transports so crews can better detect hazards and obstructions and have greater situational awareness.
“Air Methods is extremely proud to have met this key safety objective,” said Aaron Todd, chief executive officer, Air Methods. “With the largest air medical fleet in the industry, we anticipated 100 percent NVG compliance was going to take time to complete. The team remained diligent in the effort because we believe NVGs, coupled with our standard suite of advanced cockpit technologies, keep our crews and patients safe during night operations and further enhance the safety of our operations.”
Installing and requiring that pilots use night vision imaging systems for visual flight rules operations at night was an item included in the 2009 National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) recommendations to public Helicopter Emergency Medical Services operators. This accomplishment is part of the framework of the Company’s Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) voluntary Safety Management System (SMS) program. The SMS program is an organizational framework created and implemented by the FAA to systematically guide, track, and provide recognition for safety efforts by commercial air operators. In May 2013, Air Methods successfully reached the highest level (Level 4 continuous improvement stage) of the program.
Air Methods Corporation (www.airmethods.com) is the global leader in air medical transportation. The Air Medical Services Division is the largest provider of air medical transport services in the United States. United Rotorcraft Division specializes in the design and manufacture of aeromedical and aerospace technology. The Tourism Division is comprised of Sundance Helicopters, Inc., which provides helicopter tours and charter flights, primarily focusing on Grand Canyon tours. Air Methods’ fleet of owned, leased or maintained aircraft features over 400 helicopters and fixed wing aircraft.