SANTA ROSA, Calif.--In an ongoing program to modernize and upgrade its fleet of emergency air medical helicopters, REACH Air Medical Services has taken delivery of a new Eurocopter EC135 helicopter. The aircraft will be based at REACH's Concord, CA base, known as REACH 3. The new aircraft will be the sixth EC135 for REACH, a 26-year-old emergency air medical services provider, bringing the fleet to twenty helicopters and eight fixed-wing aircraft and an additional 10 ground ambulances.
"This latest addition is part of an ongoing modernization and upgrading that will take us far into the future. Our workhorse Agusta helicopters have served our patients and communities well over the years. The replacement EC135's offer enhanced capabilities: greater distance, ability to carry more weight, increased room for hospital specialty teams and neonatal transports requiring a portable isolette or incubator," says Sean Russell, President of REACH.
Russell continues, "This is the first of three new state-of-the-art aircraft that are being built for REACH, and will be arriving at regular intervals this year. As they are put into service, we will see an increase in our service availability and performance on behalf of patients, partner hospital and EMS providers. Our Concord base will be able to more efficiently transport the smallest of newborns. Key partners Children's Hospital & Research Center Oakland, UC Davis, UC San Francisco and pre-hospital EMS agency ConFire, and various other agencies served primarily out of Concord, will call REACH and this new aircraft into service for all types of medical emergencies and interfacility transfers."
REACH was the first air ambulance company in the United States to receive approval by the FAA to operate off published instrument airways using its own proprietary GPS routes to specific hospitals. Founded in 1987, REACH currently has bases throughout California, Oregon and Texas. Each base provides 24/7 emergency helicopter service to the surrounding areas. REACH has performed more than 75,000 air ambulance missions since its inception.
"An essential element of our success is that we can respond to most situations and customer needs because of our talented flight crew, aircraft interior configuration, aircraft performance, payload and IFR capability, and the EC135 is a key component to this success," added Russell.