Airbus Helicopters has delivered China’s first fully-equipped EC135 air ambulance. This twin-engine EC135 helicopter will become the reference helicopter for Chinese airborne emergency medical service operations
This Airbus Helicopters’ delivery of a twin-engine EC135 is the first rotary wing aircraft outfitted for dedicated helicopter emergency medical services (HEMS) missions in the country.
During a ceremony at Airbus Helicopters’ Donauwörth, Germany engineering and production site, where the aircraft was assembled, the EC135 was handed over to the 999 Emergency Rescue Centre (999 Centre), which is a Beijing Red Cross Foundation subsidiary.
“In addition to benefiting from the EC135’s excellence as an EMS helicopter, we also appreciate the added value of Airbus Helicopters’ experience and relationships with HEMS operators,” stated Mr. Ma Runhai, Executive Vice President of Beijing Red Cross Society of China.
“It enables us to help achieve the national strategic goal of comprehensively deepening the reforms and propelling the modernization of the governance system and capacities. It will also help Beijing Red Cross Society of China to achieve the goal of becoming a leader in China and a first-class organization in the world.”
The air ambulance helicopter is the EC135 P2e version of Airbus Helicopters’ lightweight twin-engine rotary wing aircraft family, and is fully equipped with medical systems from Bucher – the same provider for many established European HEMS operators.
“The EC135 is a benchmark for HEMS operators worldwide, as it has been designed with the expertise of doctors for medical transportation and services,” explained Wolfgang Schoder, CEO of Airbus Helicopters Germany.
“It is the perfect platform to kick-start China’s efforts in ramping up its airborne emergency medical services.”
A delegation of doctors from the 999 Centre are currently undergoing familiarisation courses in Augsbourg on the Bucher-supplied equipment. This follows a one-week introduction to HEMS in the ADAC HEMS Academy near Cologne. In parallel, Airbus Helicopters is providing helicopter training, organising a cooperation outreach, and establishing relationships and workshops for the Chinese with leading European air rescue operators to ensure a smooth and successful initiation of the country’s new HEMS operations.
“The relaxation of China’s low-altitude airspace augurs well for the development of HEMS which is very much needed in a country of such geographical and population size,” said Norbert Ducrot, President of Airbus Helicopters China.
“999 Centre’s initiative to launch this public service is highly commendable and will be well-appreciated by the people of China.”
In addition to this initial EC135 P2e a second helicopter will be delivered in the first quarter of 2015 and a letter of intent for two EC145 T2 helicopters has also has been signed by the air ambulance institution.