After less than 7 years of operations in Italy with Inaer Aviation Italia and later with Babcock Mission Critical Services Italia, this AgustaWestland AW139, registered I-AVCS, was cancelled towards United Kingdom on date 27 March 2020 and reassigned as G-CLLP.
Thanks to Oscar BERNARDI for his contribution in order to realize this Photo Report Page with full coverage of the helicopters present at GRIFONE 2019 International Search and Rescue Exercise. Foligno Airport (PG), 9-13 September 2019.
Today marks the 50th anniversary of the first patient ever transported by the Maryland State Police Aviation Command. On March 19, 1970, MSP’s “Helicopter 108,” crewed by pilot Corporal Gary Moore and Trooper First Class Paul Benson, was summoned to the Baltimore Beltway (I-695) and Falls Road for a patient involved in a motor vehicle crash.
The two troopers, manning a turbine-powered
Bell Jet Ranger helicopter, flew the injured motorist to the Center for the
Study of Trauma, known today as the University of Maryland R Adams Cowley Shock
Trauma Center. Much has changed since that first mission, but our goal to
protect and improve the quality of life through the airborne delivery of
emergency medical transportation has not.
The Maryland State Police Aviation Command today marks the 50th anniversary of the first civilian medevac mission flown in our state and the commencement of an integrated emergency medical system whose members have helped saved tens of thousands of lives since.
On March 19, 1970, at 11:20 a.m., Maryland
State Police “Helicopter 108,” crewed by pilot Corporal Gary Moore and medic
Trooper First Class Paul Benson, was summoned to the Baltimore Beltway and
Falls Road for a patient involved in a motor vehicle crash. The two troopers,
manning a turbine-powered Bell Jet Ranger helicopter, flew the injured motorist
to the Center for the Study of Trauma, known today as the University of
Maryland R Adams Cowley Shock Trauma Center.
“It took about three weeks before
we got our first call because it was all new all over the state,” said retired
Lt. Colonel Gary Moore in a Maryland State Police video that highlighted the
department’s historic firsts. “That particular morning in 1970, [TFC] Paul
[Benson] and I were the duty crew and landed on the highway, picked that
patient up and took him down to the trauma center. That patient did live.”
The Thursday morning mission to the Brooklandville community in Baltimore County half a century ago held the distinction of the formal expansion of the Maryland State Police into the world of emergency medical services. The mission marked the first time a civilian agency transported a critically-injured trauma patient from a scene by medevac helicopter. This had never before done before outside of a military setting.
“It is with the deepest pride I join Governor
Larry Hogan, Lt. Governor Boyd Rutherford, the members of the Maryland General
Assembly and the Maryland Institute For Emergency Medical Services Systems in
congratulating the men and women of the Maryland State Police Aviation Command
on the 50th anniversary of the first civilian medevac flight in our state,”
Maryland State Police Superintendent Colonel Woodrow Jones III said. “We are a
proud partner in an amazing system of emergency medical services personnel and resources
that includes the dedicated fire and EMS personnel on the scene and the
incredible nurses, doctors and support personnel at trauma centers and
hospitals throughout Maryland.”
“Since that first flight 50 years ago, the
aviation technicians, support staff, flight paramedics and pilots of the
Maryland State Police Aviation Command have never wavered in their commitment
to provide medevac, search and rescue, law enforcement and homeland security
services to the residents of our state and those who visit here,” Colonel Jones
continued. “They truly have a passion for what they do and daily provide the
best care in the air found anywhere. In partnership with our state’s emergency
medical services system members, the women and men of the Aviation Command will
continue to perform miracles in Maryland’s skies every day.”
During the past 50 years, the members of the
Maryland State Police Aviation Command have completed more than 180,000
missions and transported over 150,000 patients. The Aviation Command currently
has a fleet of 10 AgustaWestland AW 139 helicopters that are assigned to seven
sections located in Allegany, Frederick, Baltimore, Prince George’s, St.
Mary’s, Talbot and Wicomico counties.
The Maryland State Police Aviation Division
medical mission profile began in November 1960 with a Hiller UH12E helicopter.
The unmistakable dome-style aircraft, popularized by the TV series M*A*S*H, was
used primarily for police missions. However, a medical “support” profile soon
took hold and initiated the idea of medical evacuation for Maryland citizens.
Systematic medical care was not provided
on-board the Hiller helicopter. Instead, the aircraft would transport heart
attack victims and expectant mothers following crippling snowstorms, or other
emergencies. Medical rescues were performed with the Hiller as early as 1966,
but not under a complete system of “en route care.”
Dr. R Adams Cowley, the former U.S. Army
surgeon known for being the father of the “Golden Hour” concept in trauma
medicine, was the driving force behind this expansion into the area of medical
evacuation (medevac). Dr. Cowley, the founder of the University of Maryland
Shock Trauma Center in Baltimore, believed that medevac transportation of
critically injured patients to Shock Trauma would save lives. He collaborated
with Maryland State Police Pilot Robert Wolfe and other innovative Marylanders
to close the most significant gap in trauma care.
Dr. Cowley was right. Since the early 1970’s,
the University of Maryland Shock Trauma Center and Maryland’s integrated
emergency medical services system grew into a network of trauma centers,
specialty hospitals and medevac services that earned them a worldwide
reputation as the leaders in trauma care.
The Department replaced its fleet
of Jet Rangers in the late 1980’s, with the procurement of the AS365 Dauphin
helicopters which provided additional enhancements for the fleet, such as
increased speed, the added safety component of two engines and additional space
to accommodate two patients. In 2013, the program was enhanced again when the
fleet transitioned to the AgustaWestland AW139 helicopters.
Additional safety equipment and measures were incorporated, along with the
addition of a second pilot and a second medical provider to the standard flight
crew. The 24-hour-a-day mission of the Maryland State Police Aviation Command
has grown to include aerial rescue, homeland security support, search and
rescue and disaster assessment.
Civilian Pilot-in-Command Craig Thompson has
witnessed the evolution of the Maryland State Police medevac program during his
46 years with the Department. After more than 10 years as a road trooper, Mr.
Thompson transitioned from a cruiser to the cockpit of a Jet Ranger. Still a
pilot with the Aviation Command, Mr. Thompson has flown all three models of
“The Jet Ranger was fun to fly, but not
certified IFR (instrument flight rules), even though we flew in less than VFR
(visual flight rules) weather all the time,” said Mr. Thompson. “The Dauphin
was fast and instrument capable. The AW139 was a big jump from the Dauphin. Our
current aircraft is much bigger, faster and much more capable.”
The commemoration of this important
anniversary would be incomplete without acknowledging the ultimate sacrifices
of those members of the Maryland State Police Aviation Command who have lost
their lives in the line-of-duty in one airplane and four helicopter crashes.
These crashes have claimed the lives of nine state troopers and one emergency
medical technician. The memories of these Fallen Heroes and their families will
live on for eternity as they made the ultimate sacrifice performing this
lifesaving mission for the citizens of Maryland.
Thanks to Marco TUFARELLI for this image of the factory new Airgreen‘s Leonardo AW139, now registered as I-WOOD, while performing maintenance test flights in Vergiate [as I-EASM] earlier in December 2019.
Thanks to Luigi PISANO / Aviaphotos for these images of the third Leonardo AW139 delivered to The Helicopter Company of Saudi Arabia and registered HZ-HC5 … at the beginning of the ferry flight towards her new home. Milan Malpensa, February 2020.
PRESS RELEASE – PHOENIX, 6 February 2020, Amanda JENSEN
Epic 2.0 Phase 8 upgrade introduces range of features that improves safety for a variety of missions and conditions.
Honeywell (NYSE: HON) is providing Leonardo’s helicopter division with a significant cockpit upgrade — Honeywell’s innovative Primus Epic 2.0 — for its AW139 helicopters. Primus Epic 2.0 will deliver innovative and intuitive features that provide better maps, improved situational awareness at night and in marginal weather, and easier access through wireless connectivity, improving safety and saving time. For the first time in the industry, it is track-based, meaning navigation follows the actual path of the helicopter and accounts for wind and other environmental factors.
“Since its first certification, our AW139 platform has been supported by the latest Honeywell software technology,” said, Paul De Jonge, Vice President of Marketing, Leonardo Helicopter Division. “With Honeywell’s Primus Epic 2.0 upgrade, we continue to stay ahead of the industry by enabling pilots to fly a variety of challenging approaches. We continue to support several helicopter-specific missions — be it corporate VIP transport, emergency medical services, oil and gas, or search and rescue operations, with increased levels of safety.”
The Primus Epic 2.0 Phase 8 upgrade includes new features that make operations safer, smarter and faster.The SmartView synthetic vision system is usable all the way down into the hover, helping pilots navigate during low-visibility conditions and challenging missions. These missions can include steep 9 degree descents into landing areas in challenging terrain and oil rig approaches. Flight crews will also benefit from a more user-friendly, iNAV map visual interface with easy-to-use displays and an improved Cursor Control Device that makes map manipulation and menu navigation quicker and more comfortable.
“Technology innovations are crucial to reducing pilot workload and making flights safer for crew and passengers,” said Mike Ingram, vice president and general manager, Cockpit Systems, Honeywell Aerospace. “With the Epic 2.0 Phase 8 upgrade, AW139 pilots will not only reduce the time and cost of some operations, especially those in weather and around challenging terrain, they will also experience some of the best safety features available anywhere in the helicopter market.”
The Phase 8 upgrade also increases connectivity capabilities, with Wireless Data Loading that lets pilots access data at high speeds remotely without a hardwire connection, transferring flight plans wirelessly and accelerating preflight actions.
OMNI has selected SKYTRAC’s real-time HUMS and push-to-talk solutions to drive safety and improve operational efficiencies.
ANAHEIM, CA, January 29, 2020 – OMNI Táxi Aéreo has selected SKYTRAC to provide both Real-Time Health and Usage Monitoring System (HUMS) and Satellite Push-to-Talk (PTT) solutions on nine AW139s currently engaged in services contracts with PETROBRAS, the largest multinational Brazilian producer of oil and gas, to become the country’s first AW139s equipped with the industry-leading technology.
“SKYTRAC has an excellent reputation as a leading enterprise data solution provider, and we are looking forward to rolling out upgrades with them in the coming months,” said Roberto Coimbra, CEO at OMNI. “Equipping both Satellite Push-to-Talk and Real-Time HUMS on our AW139s will drive safety and improve operational efficiencies for our customers.”
A vital safety program that can help catch, communicate, and resolve emerging safety issues as they are detected, the onboard system monitors the HUMS parameters in flight and alerts ground crews in real-time when exceedances are captured. The solution also streamlines the transfer of HUMS and flight data monitoring files postflight to ground stations, eliminating the need for technicians to board the aircraft and manually download files.
OMNI will also equip SKYTRAC’s PTT solution, a satellite-based 256-bit encrypted radio system which allows the operations control center to efficiently communicate with the aircraft while in flight. The system can hold up to 15 talkgroups per device with crystal clear sound, opposed to traditional HF radio commonly known for distortion and static, cost-prohibitive equipment, and unruly radio tower agreements.
Utilizing the Iridium network for true pole-to-pole coverage, and the ISAT-200A to enable functionality, PTT-enabled assets can communicate freely with less than half a second audio delay from speech on one end to audio playback at the other. PTT also eliminates the reliance of ground or offshore radio towers, and can be even more important when engaged to support emergency situations, a critical feature for offshore oil & gas operators.