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News > Mission Hospitals Celebrates MAMA's 20 Accident-Free AMS Years WithAmerican Eurocopter

Mission Hospitals Celebrates MAMA's 20 Accident-Free AMS Years WithAmerican Eurocopter

June 4, 2007

20 years of service, all accident-free -That's the accomplishment being celebrated by Mission Hospitals' "MAMA" air medical helicopter service. Based in Asheville, NC, Mission Hospitals is a regional not-for-profit community hospital system that serves Western North Carolina. Since MAMA was founded on September 29, 1986 with an American Eurocopter BO105, MAMA has completed over 12,330 safe patient transfers. Today, it flies an American Eurocopter EC135, and an American Eurocopter BK117 that was acquired in April 2007. All told, Mission Hospitals' air medical team has logged over 11,600 accident-free hours on American Eurocopter airframes. 
"MAMA's territory includes the North Carolina mountains, which can make for some pretty difficult flying," says John Grindstaff, Mission Hospitals' supervisor for air medical services. "As a result, turbulence and rough weather are not an uncommon part of our jobs. Thankfully, our American Eurocopters are very safe, reliable, and dependable helicopters. When facing challenging conditions aloft, we feel safe in our helicopters - known as 'MAMA 1' and 'MAMA 2' - and this allows us to concentrate on providing care to our patients." 
Of course, flying safe, reliable and dependable helicopters is not enough. To achieve 20 accident-free years, MAMA's pilots have to be among the best in the business, and they are. "Our people are proud of our safety record," says Grindstaff. "That's why we don't rest on our laurels. Every day, we are looking for ways to improve our safety, and to do an even better job for our patients." Aviation expertise including pilots, mechanics and aircraft maintenance services are supplied to Mission Hospitals under contract from Air Methods Corporation of 
Englewood Colorado. 
"20 years is a long time," observes Marc Paganini, President and CEO of American Eurocopter. "20 accident-free years is thus an astounding achievement, and a true testament to the dedication of Mission Hospitals' air crews, and the helicopters that American Eurocopter has been privileged to supply to them." 
About American Eurocopter 

American Eurocopter is the American subsidiary of Eurocopter, the largest helicopter manufacturer in the world, and EADS North America, the North American operations of EADS, the second largest aerospace and defense company in the world. American Eurocopter markets, sells and supports the broadest range of civil and para-public helicopters offered by any manufacturer. The product line represents the most cost-effective, technologically-advanced helicopters, ranging from light single to heavy twin, serving all markets and missions. American Eurocopter's headquarters and main facility are in Grand Prairie, TX, with a large new manufacturing and production facility in Columbus, Mississippi. 

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