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ADAC's Christoph 15 marks 45 years of assistance
More than 58,600 flights and 254 winch rescues; that is the impressive mission total of ADAC Luftrettung's Straubing-based Christoph 15 helicopter on its 45th anniversary.
ADAC Luftrettung's Straubing-based Christoph 15 EC135.

On the 45th anniversary of ADAC Luftrettung's Straubing-based Christoph 15 helicopter, the company looks back over developments and milestones; more than 58,600 flights and 254 winch rescues.

On November 19, 1977 a brand new Bölkow Bo105 took off from the St Elisabeth Clinic for the first time; it was still flying the flag of the German Federal Border Police and marked the beginning of air rescue in south-eastern Bavaria. When the federal government withdrew more and more from air rescue missions in the 1990s, for cost reasons, the Straubing base was put out to tender again. The non-profit organisation ADAC Luftrettung was awarded the contract and took over what was then the ground station on 1 December, 1995.

On 10 August, 1998 the helicopter was changed to a modern EC135 manufactured by Airbus Helicopters. A particular advantage is its significantly lower noise emissions from the encased tail rotor, plus the safety the casing provides for those on the ground. The EC135 suits emergency medical operations due to its manoeuvrability, but can also cover long distances for intensive care transfers and has sufficient power for winch rescues.

In 2014, a new air rescue centre was opened on the roof of the St Elisabeth Clinic, since when the helicopter crews have started their missions from a height of 25 metres.

Since the spring of 2018, the Straubing-based helicopter has been equipped with a rescue winch, one of six ADAC air rescue helicopters nationwide. The demanding flight manoeuvre is used, among other things, when an acutely ill or injured patient has to be rescued from inaccessible terrain in the Bavarian Forest and needs emergency medical care.

The teams are made up of pilots from the ADAC air rescue service, emergency doctors from St Elisabeth Clinic and paramedics from the Bavarian Red Cross.

"My sincere thanks go to all employees who save lives every day, enthusiastically and with the highest level of professionalism, as well as to all our partner organisations and supporters for the close cooperation that has been going on for decades," says managing director Frédéric Bruder.

In the past year alone, Christoph 15 has been alerted 1,775 times. It is ready for action every day from sunrise to sunset and is alerted by the integrated control center in Straubing.

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