BAN's World GazetteerItaly
Leonardo and the Italian National Alpine and Speleological Rescue Corps (Corpo Nazionale Soccorso Alpino e Speleologico: CNSAS) have renewed an agreement to enhance existing technologies and improve training in order to make helicopter rescues safer and more efficient. The agreement was signed for the first time in December 2016 and will now continue for the next three years.
Leonardo and CNSAS are considered to be a reference, at both a local and international level, in the rescue sector covering mountains and inaccessible environments. The helicopter is now a strategic resource for saving lives while carrying out the most complex missions. In 2020 CNSAS' alpine rescue team carried out the largest number of missions in the history of the corps (over 10,000 in a year), and Leonardo continues to increase the mission capabilities of its latest generation products, the AW139 and AW169, in terms of equipment and performance and support and training services for healthcare and emergency workers. The fight against coronavirus has influenced everything and provided an extra challenge; the helicopter has been the main vehicle for numerous transport missions utilising special stretchers with biological containment, and these were used for the first time in Italy and in the world on Leonardo's civil air ambulances.
The document signed strengthens a cooperation that has been a reality for years, ever since CNSAS' alpine rescue personnel started operating Leonardo helicopters. The three-year, renewable cooperation agreement entails setting up a joint working group, which aims to exchange technical-operative information for an appropriate assessment of Leonardo rescue aircraft models' technical specifications, mission equipment and cabin layout. The two partners will also evaluate together the new rescue and adaptation techniques for helicopters to modern operational needs, as well as jointly developing the navigation, geolocation and target mapping systems. The training activities will also include the techniques for using the rescue winch in combination with the use of the stretcher.
“The renewal of the agreement with Leonardo can only bring benefits to the entire emergency system and to the civil protection area in a broad sense,” says president of the Italian National Alpine and Speleological Rescue Corps Maurizio Dellantonio. “Modern medical rescue calls for development of a multi-agency perspective, where specialised rescue forces are also able to interface with the world of research and industrial production, to guarantee citizens excellent service.”
Leonardo MD Gian Piero Cutillo adds: “Our training academy in Sesto Calende today represents the collaboration path we undertook together years ago. We have strongly renewed our shared commitment in the training of personnel assigned to delicate operations through a unique vehicle such as the helicopter, through the development of new solutions and capabilities, which allow the air ambulance to perform its task better and better. We will work together on new projects that will allow us to bring the fruits of these synergies on board of our products.”