Air Safety Corner

UTair India helicopters rescues injured Paragliders and Car Rally participants in Himachal Pradesh

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Utair India Pvt. Ltd. deployed one of its AS350B3 helicopters at the Paragliding World Cup event 2015 held at Bir-Billing in the Kangra Valley of Himachal Pradesh, a hill State in the Northern part of India between 23rd October to 31st October, 2015. Bir-Billing in the Dauladhar mountain range is known as one of the finest aero sports sites in the world
The paragliders, Ruth Chirchil Dover from UK suffered injuries in her neck in a crash landing at a height of 9000 ft. and was rescued in no time by the helicopter to Vivekanand Hospital in Palampur. The other rescue was of a South African national who suffered a spinal cord injury at a height of around 8500 ft and was airlifted to Tanda multi speciality hospital
The helicopter was not able to land at one location because of the tilt and narrow landing space which required manoeuvrability by the Pilot and a suitable location was identified nearby.
The helicopter was positioned throughout the event at the paragliding site with a doctor and attendants to meet any emergency.
UTair India also positioned its AS 350B3 helicopter for the rescue work for the Raid De Himalayan Car Rally held in Shimla from 11th to 16th October, 2015. The rally route was long and participants had to drive through difficult hilly terrains of Himachal and J&K. The Pilots and the helicopters of the Company did two difficult rescue missions at the Rally. The first rescue was at Bhardwah (J&K) at a height of 10,000 feet in which two participants in a Gypsy suffered grievous injuries in their spinal cord and were flown to Chandigarh for treatment. The other rescue was at a height of 13,000 feet at Padum in Leh & Ladhak area (South of Ladakh valley). The participant, a motor cyclist had a fractured collar bone and was rescued to Rangdum base. Last year too, helicopters of UTair were involved in the rescue activities at Raid De Himalayan Car Rally.
AS350B3, a single engine French made helicopter is a robust and powerful machine which can scale high altitudes and is ideally suited for rescue missions of the type carried out by UTair.
UTair India has gained expertise in difficult rescue missions. Its helicopters were positioned at F1 event held in the year 2013 at Buddh International Circuit at Greater Noida to meet any emergency evacuation.
In the disaster of 2013 in Uttarakhand and the flood fury in J&K in the year 2014, the helicopters of UTair were very actively involved in relief and rescue missions. The Company was honoured with the prestigious Captain Willian J. Kossler Award by AHS International – The Vertical Flight Society, U.S.A. for the excellent work done by the Company in Uttarakhand Disaster Relief Helicopter Operations for airlifting more than 20,000 people and over 500 tons of aid after catastrophic flooding and landslides in June 2013.