Local air ambulance service celebrates landmark 30,000th rescue mission

Published on: Thursday, 22nd February 2018

The local air ambulance service has announced that it recently reached a major milestone in its history with the completion of its 30,000th rescue mission.

The charity, which first launched its lifesaving services in 2003, operates two emergency helicopters that provide rapid response to trauma and medical emergencies: the Warwickshire & Northamptonshire Air Ambulance (WNAA) and the Derbyshire, Leicestershire & Rutland Air Ambulance (DLRAA), alongside its critical care cars on the ground.

Covering more than 3,850 miles, with an average response time of just 13 minutes, new figures show that in 2017 alone, the service carried out 3,547 missions, of which 2,026 were attended by the DLRAA, and 1,521 by the WNAA. 

Out of all completed missions last year, 39 per cent were due to road traffic collisions, 25 per cent to medical emergencies and 9 per cent to falls, while 5 per cent were sports related, 5 per cent due to industrial incidents, and 17 per cent to other accidents.

All were funded entirely by donations however, as the service receives no government, NHS or national lottery aid, and Richard Clayton, Director of Operations at the Air Ambulance Service, said that public support is vital to help keep their helicopters flying:

He said: “We are incredibly proud to have reached this amazing milestone and make such a difference to so many patients and their families. As a charity, we simply couldn’t have done it without the support of our wonderful donors, supporters and volunteers, whose generosity over the years has been fantastic. It’s also a testament to our wonderful hardworking staff, including our pilots, doctors and critical care paramedics who do lifesaving work every day, 365 days a year. Here’s to the next 30,000 missions, and beyond”.

Gavin Alexander, a Critical Care Paramedic, also added: “Every life saved is a victory for us, and we are forever grateful for all the donations that help keep this important service flying. As a critical care paramedic it’s a job that’s both rewarding and challenging, but to be able to make such a difference to the local community is a fantastic feeling.”

The service has also revealed that it has extra cause for celebration, with the news that it will open an improved base facility at East Midlands Airport in spring 2018 for its Derbyshire, Leicestershire and Rutland Air Ambulance service.

2018 was already set to be another milestone year for both the Warwickshire & Northamptonshire Air Ambulance and the Derbyshire, Leicestershire & Rutland Air Ambulance, with plans to extend their critical care lifesaving services to 24 hours a day, seven days a week, 365 days a year, later this year.

You can help support the service by fundraising, making a one off donation, or signing up to a Direct Debit.

More information on any of these can be found by visiting their website at www.theairambulanceservice.org.uk or calling the charity directly on 0300 3045 999.

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