Geisinger Life Flight is now operating a refurbished EC145, equipped with Metro Aviation's STC for the Garmin GTN 650/750 Xi series, certified for single pilot instrument flight rules use in the EC145. The 650/750 Xi allows pilots to visualise the entire flight plan, including holds and approaches, on a high resolution touchscreen.
The aircraft was delivered during a milestone year, as the aeromedical programme is celebrating 40 years of providing care to Geisinger Health's service area and beyond. The Life Flight fleet consists of nine helicopters and averages over 3,600 transports per year.
“Our mission is to help save lives by providing the highest level of critical care available outside of a hospital and doing so with safety as our top priority,” says Gerald Splitt, Geisinger Life Flight programme director. “This new equipment installed in our newest aircraft will help our crews better deliver on our mission, and we're fortunate to have a great partner in Metro Aviation to help integrate the latest in aircraft technology into our programme.”
Shreveport, Louisiana based Metro Aviation installed the Garmin equipment in the EC145 cockpit, along with a complete medical interior that can accommodate three medical providers and up to two patients. Medical mounts installed by Metro include secure ventilators, IV pumps and multifunctional monitors. The aircraft will act as a flying intensive care unit.
The 650/750 Xi multifunction display supports multiple inputs and can show moving maps, terrain, traffic, weather and airport diagrams. The new STC includes the Garmin GTX345R, GDL 69H, TAS605A, GWX75H, HTAWS and ADS-B. In addition, it rolls up many of the new features that were not previously available in the GNS series of equipment. Metro Aviation has also received a second STC for the Garmin GTN 650/750 on the Airbus EC135.
Geisinger has completed more than 75,000 transports in its 40 years. Its fleet includes one BK117-C1 and eight Airbus EC145 helicopters. Life Flight is fully accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Medical Transport Systems and holds its own air carrier certificate through the Federal Aviation Administration.