SEATTLE (October 23, 2012) -- American Eurocopter is proud to announce that MedFlight of Ohio has won the 2012 Vision Zero Aviation Safety Award, topping the list of a record 25 nominees.
MedFlight representatives were presented with the award and a $10,000 check by Anthony DiNota, American Eurocopter Vice President of Sales, Marketing and Customer Support, during the AMTC Community Awards Banquet held Monday evening, Oct. 22. The funds will assist MedFlight in continuing to promote safety within the organization and with its customers.
"MedFlight is an incredibly well respected flight program that exemplifies a ‘safety first’ mentality each and every day,” said DiNota. “Their ongoing upgrades in technology, implementation of innovative programs, and the development of a strong culture of safety with employees and customers, as well as their community outreach, make them the perfect choice for the Vision Zero Award.”
Formed through the progressive merger of two competing hospital air medical programs, MedFlight was the first non-profit hospital sponsored AMS program in the U.S, to out-base a helicopter from an urban hospital helipad to a rural community, reducing response time for patients. That base recently celebrated 25 years of safe service, transporting over 15,000 patients. MedFlight contracts with Metro Aviation for all helicopter services.
“Following a thorough and rigorous safety audit in 2006, we made the decision to change our approach to safety in the most aggressive and comprehensive way possible,” said Rod Crane, MedFlight of Ohio CEO. “We brought in Director of Safety, Colin Henry, began developing a number of safety initiatives, and moved forward with aircraft that would meet or exceed FAA recommended technology and support for pilot decision-making. Our various efforts have succeeded by increasing awareness, engagement and commitment to safety.“
All programs and operators who are members of the Association of Air Medical Service (AAMS) are eligible to apply for the Vision Zero Aviation Safety Award, and may nominate themselves. There were 25 organizations nominated this year, more than double the number of entries in any year of the award’s six-year history. The purpose of the award is not just to recognize and give credit to a program or entity that has demonstrated a commitment to safety, but also to spotlight their specific safety initiatives and share them with the entire industry so that others may incorporate them into their own programs.
“This year the Committee reviewed a record 25 quality nominations,” said,” Bill Bryant, Chairman of the Blue Ribbon Selection Committee, “While many of the nominees have implemented some creative new ideas, MedFlight of Ohio stood out from the rest by the expansive list of safety initiatives they have undertaken. We look forward to sharing these initiatives with the entire air medical industry, so that others may consider implementing them.”
MedFlight utilizes a variety of innovative safety initiatives that are representative of the Vision Zero goal, including:
Program plans call for 100 MEP variants of the UH-72A, which are intended to support the Army National Guard's Security and Support (S&S) Battalion Mission.