Patient Transportation

Life-Guard Helicopter Safety Update

Though Carilion Clinic Life-Guard is a critical resource in saving lives, its crew knows the risk they take upon each takeoff. That is why safety is the number one priority on all missions.

To maintain the safety of both patients and crew, the Life-Guard team provides helicopter safety education for EMS crews. Such continuing safety education plays an important role in earning and maintaining Commission on Accreditation of Medical Transport Systems (CAMTS) accreditation.

For example, some of Carilion Clinic Life-Guard's newest safety features include:

  • Helicopter TAWS (terrain warning system)
  • TCAS (aircraft warning system)
  • Night vision goggles
  • Can transport two patients, depending on weight
  • "Glass" cockpit, the latest technology in aviation
  • Tail rotor illumination light
  • All previous rules for landing zone safety apply

Also, the Life-Guard team emphasizes that the same safety rules apply for the new helicopters:

  • When loading the helicopter, DO NOT GO PAST THE REAR FINS
  • Stretchers are on board all Life-Guard helicopters. However, these do NOT secure into ambulances
  • No loose objects
  • Do not approach the helicopter unless a flight crew member has signaled you to approach
  • Do not operate the doors on the helicopter
  • During HOT loads, use protective hearing and eye protection
  • Always use universal precautions when unloading the helicopter