Air ambulances return to the skies amid safety fears

09/05 Updated: 14/05 15:56

ALL three helicopters run by the Midlands Air Ambulance were back answering 999 calls this morning (Wednesday) after a day grounded due to safety fears.

The Eurocopter EC135 aircraft were grounded on Tuesday after cracks were found in the main rotor hub-shaft flange on three aircraft in other parts of Europe.

No cracks have been found in any of the Midlands Air Ambulance aircraft.

Daily checks will be carried out on the potentially affected area until they are replaced by Eurocopter.

The Princethorpe-based Air Ambulance Service, which covers Warwickshire and Northamptonshire using a different make of helicopter, provided cover.

A West Midlands Ambulance Service spokesman said: "Safety has to be the number one consideration for both patients and staff and we understand why operator Bond Air Services took the decision they did.

"However, it is important to note at no time did the region not have access to air ambulance aircraft.

“The West Midlands is extremely fortunate to have access to no fewer than five air ambulances provided by two charities; three from Midlands Air Ambulance and two from The Air Ambulance Service."

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