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News > MedFlight of Ohio wins American Eurocopter's 2012 Vision Zero Aviation Safety Award

MedFlight of Ohio wins American Eurocopter's 2012 Vision Zero Aviation Safety Award

October 23, 2012

Seattle, Washington – American Eurocopter is proud to announce that MedFlight of Ohio has won the 2012 Vision Zero Aviation Safety Award, topping the list of a record 25 nominees.

MedFlight of Ohio has been named winner of the 2012 Vision Zero Award MedFlight of Ohio has been named winner of the 2012 Vision Zero Award. Anthony DiNota, American Eurocopter Vice President of Sales, Marketing and Customer Support, presented the $10,000 check to MedFlight of Ohio CEO Rod Crane at the annual AMTC Community Awards Banquet held Monday evening, Oct. 22 in Seattle. The annual Vision Zero Award is presented to a program or entity that demonstrates a commitment to safety, with the goal of spotlighting their specific safety initiatives and sharing them with the industry for the benefit of other programs.

MedFlight representatives were presented with the award and a $10,000 check by Anthony DiNota, American Eurocopter Vice President of Sales, Marketing and Customer Support, during the AMTC Community Awards Banquet held Monday evening, Oct. 22. The funds will assist MedFlight in continuing to promote safety within the organization and with its customers.

"MedFlight is an incredibly well respected flight program that exemplifies a ‘safety first’ mentality each and every day,” said DiNota. “Their ongoing upgrades in technology, implementation of innovative programs, and the development of a strong culture of safety with employees and customers, as well as their community outreach, make them the perfect choice for the Vision Zero Award.”

Formed through the progressive merger of two competing hospital air medical programs, MedFlight was the first non-profit hospital sponsored AMS program in the U.S, to out-base a helicopter from an urban hospital helipad to a rural community, reducing response time for patients. That base recently celebrated 25 years of safe service, transporting over 15,000 patients.  MedFlight contracts with Metro Aviation for all helicopter services.

“Following a thorough and rigorous safety audit in 2006, we made the decision to change our approach to safety in the most aggressive and comprehensive way possible,” said Rod Crane, MedFlight of Ohio CEO. “We brought in Director of Safety, Colin Henry, began developing a number of safety initiatives, and moved forward with aircraft that would meet or exceed FAA recommended technology and support for pilot decision-making. Our various efforts have succeeded by increasing awareness, engagement and commitment to safety.“

MedFlight helicopter imageAll programs and operators who are members of the Association of Air Medical Service (AAMS) are eligible to apply for the Vision Zero Aviation Safety Award, and may nominate themselves. There were 25 organizations nominated this year, more than double the number of entries in any year of the award’s six-year history. The purpose of the award is not just to recognize and give credit to a program or entity that has demonstrated a commitment to safety, but also to spotlight their specific safety initiatives and share them with the entire industry so that others may incorporate them into their own programs.

“This year the Committee reviewed a record 25 quality nominations,” said,” Bill Bryant, Chairman of the Blue Ribbon Selection Committee, “While many of the nominees have implemented some creative new ideas, MedFlight of Ohio stood out from the rest by the expansive list of safety initiatives they have undertaken. We look forward to sharing these initiatives with the entire air medical industry, so that others may consider implementing them.”

MedFlight utilizes a variety of innovative safety initiatives that are representative of the Vision Zero goal, including:

The Blue Ribbon Committee is made up of members with extensive backgrounds in the air medical industry. The 2011 Blue Ribbon Committee members are:

Bill Bryant MPA (Chair): President and Principal of Sierra Health Group; Denise Landis, RN, EMT-P, MSA, CMTE: Program Director for University of Michigan Survival Flight ; Eileen Frazer, RN, CMTE:  Executive Director of CAMTS; Ed MacDonald: Chairman of AMSAC; Chris Eastlee: President, Air Medical Operators Association; Gerry Pagano: Director of Operations, Health Care District of Palm Beach County's Trauma Hawk Aeromedical Program; Jason Schwebach MBA, MHA, CMTE: Assistant Vice President at Carolinas Healthcare System and MedCenter Air Administrative Director; Chris Bryant: Master Army Aviator, U.S. Army, Retired.

For more information about the Vision Zero program and the American Eurocopter Vision Zero Aviation Safety Award, please visit Association of Air Medical Services website:

About American Eurocopter

American Eurocopter is the U.S. affiliate of Eurocopter, the largest helicopter manufacturer in the world, and a subsidiary of EADS North America Holdings, the North American operations of EADS, the second largest aerospace and defense company in the world. American Eurocopter is a helicopter manufacturer and markets, sells and supports the broadest range of civil and parapublic 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. Company headquarters and main facility are in Grand Prairie, TX, with a large manufacturing and production facility in Columbus, MS.

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