MedFlight of Ohio Wins American Eurocopter's 2012 Vision Zero Aviation Safety Award

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.

  • An airline modeled Safety Management System (SMS) into their daily air and ground operations. MedFlight also went through a rigorous safety audit by an external expert resulting in the hiring of a full-time Director of Safety to develop and implement an SMS. MedFlight is one of the few non-part 135 certificate holders in the United States to implement an aviation SMS for all administrative, ground and air operations.
  • A Corporate Safety Culture Commitment was formed with all MedFlight employees, referred to as partners, to foster and develop safety, manage risk, continue to eliminate accidents.
  • MedFlight Partners are included in the SMS design and implementation, and are members of the SMS Work Group, Internal Evaluation Program, and ad hoc investigation team. Safety documentation is always transparent and available with live feedback on company intranet sites.
  • Adopting the Just Culture process and all employees receive annual training and testing including Threat and Error Management, Hazard Identification and Human Factors. They also publish and distribute a quarterly industry safety newsletter called Safety Matters regarding best practices and perform safety audits for others.
  • Transitioning to a uniform fleet of eight Eurocopter EC130s equipped with HTAWS, Synthetic Vision System, Auto Pilot, NVGs, TCAS, Wire Strike System, Voice Video Flight Data Recorder, SAT Real time weather at a cost of more than $26 million.
  • Modifying the Medical Communications process. Duties are divided into a Call-Taker and Dispatcher function. This allows the Dispatcher to focus on assigning, lifting, tracking, and making necessary notifications during the flight progression. Tools include a CAD, AVL/GPS tracking, and the latest in radio technology, with uninterrupted power supplies to insure continuity and back up.
  • Communications Specialist Training includes one week of classroom training utilizing mock scenarios, in addition to 11 weeks of assigned presenting.
  • Their high tech Innovations include an on-line debrief system with one screen dedicated to only safety issues, including fatigue assessment for all crew members.
  • Presenting more than 300 safety and education events in 2011 alone to fire, EMS and hospital agencies throughout Ohio.   

The Blue Ribbon Committee is made up of members with extensive backgrounds in the air medical industry. The 2011 Blue Ribbon Committee members are:

Bill Bryant MPA (Chair): President and Principal of Sierra Health Group; Denise Landis, RN, EMT-P, MSA, CMTE: Program Director for University of Michigan Survival Flight ; Eileen Frazer, RN, CMTE:  Executive Director of CAMTS; Ed MacDonald: Chairman of AMSAC; Chris Eastlee: President, Air Medical Operators Association; Gerry Pagano: Director of Operations, Health Care District of Palm Beach County's Trauma Hawk Aeromedical Program; Jason Schwebach MBA, MHA, CMTE: Assistant Vice President at Carolinas Healthcare System and MedCenter Air Administrative Director; Chris Bryant: Master Army Aviator, U.S. Army, Retired.

For more information about the Vision Zero program and the American Eurocopter Vision Zero Aviation Safety Award, please visit Association of Air Medical Services website:

About American Eurocopter

American Eurocopter is the U.S. affiliate of Eurocopter, the largest helicopter manufacturer in the world, and a subsidiary of EADS North America Holdings, the North American operations of EADS, the second largest aerospace and defense company in the world. American Eurocopter is a helicopter manufacturer and markets, sells and supports the broadest range of civil and parapublic helicopters offered by any manufacturer. The product line represents the most cost-effective, technologically-advanced helicopters, ranging from light single to heavy twin, serving all markets and missions. Company headquarters and main facility are in Grand Prairie, TX, with a large manufacturing and production facility in Columbus, MS.

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