2-Dec-2022 Source: ARA Luftrettung
Several months of administrative procedures for the airfield at Nassfeld were completed today. Emergency medical helicopter ARA-3 will take off again from December 8th for medical emergencies throughout the region. In the next few days there will be a lot of training. The ARA air rescue team expects a busy winter.
A rescue helicopter was stationed at the Carinthian Nassfeld for many years. However, the death of the owner of the then operating company in autumn 2020 led to the temporary cessation of air rescue operations at Nassfeld.
In December 2021, the non-profit ARA Flugrettung took over the emergency medical care for the entire Gail, Gitsch and Lesachtal region from the air with the ARA-3 emergency doctor helicopter from Nassfeld. But unlike the previous heli, the ARA-3 was integrated into the Carinthian control center system and is therefore available for operations throughout Carinthia during the winter months. However: The death of the owner of the previous operating company led to the revocation of the license to operate a civilian airfield at Nassfeld. Therefore, in the winter of 21/22, the ARA air rescue service at Nassfeld was given a so-called “landing permit” from the state of Carinthia as the legal basis for being allowed to take off at all.
As of today, this “temporary arrangement” is history – after several months of official proceedings, it was possible to re-establish a regular civilian airfield at Nassfeld. “It was truly a difficult and costly birth. It is only thanks to the competent authorities’ professional and solution-oriented approach that Nassfeld once again has an airfield from which the entire region can receive emergency medical care in winter,” says ARA Managing Director Thomas Jank, pleased with the positive outcome of the complex official procedure .
Punctually for the start of the ski season at Nassfeld on December 8th, the ARA-3 of the ARA air rescue service can take off again from its new home for medical emergencies on and off the slopes. “In the next few days, the pilots, flight rescuers and doctors will be trained diligently in the field so that the interaction within the crew works perfectly in an emergency,” says ARA-3 station manager Philipp Heidenreich.
In the winter of 21/22, the emergency doctor helicopter completed a total of 209 missions. The ARA-3 was called to ski accidents 114 times. “Last winter there were still numerous Covid restrictions, especially at the beginning of the season. That’s why we’re expecting an increase in the number of operations next winter,” says ARA Deputy Managing Director Andreas Grießer. It is planned that the ARA-3 will remain stationed at Nassfeld until the official end of the ski season on April 10, 2023.
The board of directors of Bergbahnen Pramollo-AG, Christian Krisper, points out that the presence of an emergency helicopter is also extremely important away from what is happening on the slopes the figures from the previous season prove it more than impressively, an absolute gain for everyone in the region.”