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Above: Students of the Night Vision Goggle Academic Instructor Course at Randolph Air Force Base, Texas, viewed through NVGs, get practical experience adjusting and wearing their NVGs.

With approximately 90% of the bases currently operational and with 100% of the fleet projected to be fully operational by mid-2010, Air Evac Lifeteam’s Night Vision Goggle program has made it one of the safest air ambulances in the country. Photographers: Steve Thurow/Ron Whitney


and then run into a weather problem -- all that does is delay the patient’s care, and that’s the last thing I want to do.” Fatal accidents have become all too common in the million dollar air-medical business. The pressure for crews to respond quickly combined with poor flight conditions like darkness and inclement weather has proven to be a deadly combination. Since more than half of fatal crashes occur at night, Air Evac Lifeteam has implemented a Night Vision Goggle program with 100% of the fleet pro- jected to be operational by July 2010, which help their pilots to avoid natural and manmade obstacles. Additionally, the company utilizes five dedicated flight simulators as part of its routine training program. Available 24 hours a day, Air Evac’s crew consists of a pilot, a nurse and a paramedic. Virtually a flying ICU, crews respond to motor vehicle accidents, heart attacks, farm accidents and other traumatic injuries, and can administer a number of life saving procedures and treatments.

In a business that is literally a race against time, a little help from the wind can go a long way. By utiliz- ing XM Weather’s Winds Aloft data product, which is viewable by altitude, Whitney can get his patients to their destinations sooner. “If I can shave 10 minutes



off of a flight by utilizing this wind data, that’s huge,” he said. Many in the medical field refer to something known as the “Golden Hour,” which is the first hour after a person is injured or at the onset of a medical illness. Studies prove that a patient’s chances of recovery are much greater if the patient can receive medical attention within the first hour. Air Evac Lifeteam’s quick response times quite often give patients that opportunity at the scene and while en route. Equipped with state-of-the-art medical equipment, Air Evac Lifeteam can transport a patient in less than half the time it would take if driven by ambulance. Page 1  |  Page 2  |  Page 3  |  Page 4  |  Page 5  |  Page 6  |  Page 7  |  Page 8  |  Page 9  |  Page 10  |  Page 11  |  Page 12  |  Page 13  |  Page 14  |  Page 15  |  Page 16  |  Page 17  |  Page 18  |  Page 19  |  Page 20  |  Page 21  |  Page 22  |  Page 23  |  Page 24  |  Page 25  |  Page 26  |  Page 27  |  Page 28  |  Page 29  |  Page 30  |  Page 31  |  Page 32  |  Page 33  |  Page 34  |  Page 35  |  Page 36  |  Page 37  |  Page 38  |  Page 39  |  Page 40  |  Page 41  |  Page 42  |  Page 43  |  Page 44  |  Page 45  |  Page 46  |  Page 47  |  Page 48  |  Page 49  |  Page 50  |  Page 51  |  Page 52