During Lincolnshire and Nottinghamshire Air Ambulance's summer coverage , the charity’s doctors, paramedics and pilots have been welcomed and supported by local communities, visitors and other emergency services.
The second aircraft, a black, white and blue AW109, arrived at Strubby Airfield in June, where it has been based during each day.
Senior HEMS Paramedic Erica Ley said: “We’ve had such a warm response from people which has been lovely. It’s been great to be able to talk to people about what we do and hear about their support for the service.”
Along with a warm welcome, the team have even been bought lunch, ice-creams and coffee.
“While we were grabbing lunch one day, a woman and her husband began chatting with us. The woman then disappeared into the café and her husband said ‘she’s gone to pay for your lunch - don’t argue with her’. It was such a lovely moment and such a thoughtful thing to do, said Erica.
The charity brought in a second helicopter dedicated to the Lincs coast in mid-June. It took over from a Critical Care Car which began responding along the seaside and surrounding areas on 1 June. Now, June and July are the charity’s busiest months on record in its 27-year history.
Pilot Chris Attrill said: “Being a resident of Skegness, I know how important a pre-hospital medical service is to the Lincolnshire coast. Supporters we meet at the scene all tell us how proud they are to have a dedicated service during these busy summer months.
“It’s been a privilege and a pleasure to fly the second aircraft this summer and I’ve seen first-hand the difference we have made to patients by being able to deliver our critical care teams to the scene so rapidly.”
The LNAA crew have also had a great response from their colleagues in other emergency services.
Coast Inspector Colin Haigh said: “I’ve seen first-hand what an asset the LNAA team are, they have been invaluable in treating members of the public in areas that are difficult to access.
“As an area with large tracts of coastline and farmland, this resource has undoubtedly saved lives.”
Mark Housam, Deputy Divisional Commander for East Division at Lincolnshire Fire and Rescue said: "During the summer season, there are challenges for all emergency services on the east coast. Firefighters are often called to respond to medical emergencies and complex incidents, not just fires. Having an additional air ambulance dedicated to the coast is a great benefit to our combined emergency response efforts, but of course to our residents and visitors in Lincolnshire too."
In early September the charity will be able to collate statistics to show how busy the second helicopter has been over the high summer months and what sort of incidents the crew attended.
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