Rega (air rescue)

Last updated
Swiss Air-Rescue
Rega-Logo.svg
IATA ICAO Callsign
-SAZ [1] SWISS AMBULANCE [2]
Founded1952
Fleet size21
Headquarters Zurich, Switzerland
Website www.rega.ch
Rega Eurocopter EC 145. Zepper-BK 117-C2-(EC145)-SchweizerischeRettungsflugwacht.jpg
Rega Eurocopter EC 145.
Sequence image of mountain take-off by Agusta A109 SP helicopter from Rega air rescue service CH.SZ.Stoos Fronalpstock Sequence Rescue-Helicopter REGA 16K 16x9-R.jpg
Sequence image of mountain take-off by Agusta A109 SP helicopter from Rega air rescue service
Rega Agusta A109 K2 in Interlaken. REGA-Negative0-38-36A(1).jpg
Rega Agusta A109 K2 in Interlaken.
Rega Agusta A109SP Cabin. Inside a REGA Agusta A109SP Da Vinci Rescue Ambulance.jpg
Rega Agusta A109SP Cabin.
Rega evacuation by plane, after the Tohoku disaster RCEvacFlight.JPG
Rega evacuation by plane, after the Tōhoku disaster

Swiss Air-Rescue (German: Schweizerische Rettungsflugwacht, French: Garde aérienne suisse de sauvetage, Rega) is a private, non-profit air rescue service that provides emergency medical assistance in Switzerland and Liechtenstein. [3] [4] Rega was established on 27 April 1952 by Dr Rudolf Bucher, who believed the Swiss rescue organization needed a specialized air sub-section. [5] Rega mainly assists with mountain rescues, though it will also operate in other terrains when needed, most notably during life-threatening emergencies. Rega also provides a repatriation and medical advice service for members who experience a medical emergency while abroad and local treatment is not available.

Contents

Rega also aids alpine farmers during the summer months in rescuing livestock and retrieving dead animals.

As a non-profit foundation, Rega does not receive financial assistance from any government. They are quite unusual within Europe, with the majority of their costs paid through the annual fees of private contributors (As of 2016: 3.2 million patrons, 38% of the population). In exchange, Rega does not charge its contributors for its search, rescue and repatriation costs. One other rare aspect of Rega is that people in distress can call for a helicopter rescue directly (phone number 1414). In case of insufficient mobile phone coverage, alpinists can also use emergency radio telephone (161.3 MHz).

The head office, the Rega Centre, (home to the Rega operations center where all missions are coordinated) is a hangar located at the northeast section of Zurich Airport within the municipality of Kloten; [6] the hangar has direct access to the runways of the airport. [7] All Rega helicopters carry a crew of three: a pilot, an emergency physician, and a paramedic who is also trained to assist the pilot for radio communication, navigation, terrain/object avoidance, and winch operations. In some situations, such as evacuating cable cars or retrieving injured climbers from a rock face, the crew also consists of a specialist trained by the Swiss Alpine Club.

In the Canton of Valais, helicopter search and rescue is carried out by Air Glaciers and Air Zermatt.

Name

The name Rega was created by combining letters from the name "Swiss Air Rescue Guard" as it was written in German (Schweizerische Rettungsflugwacht), French (Garde Aérienne Suisse de Sauvetage), and Italian (Guardia Aerea Svizzera di Soccorso). The decision to change the name was made in 1979, to create a uniform and more concise name for speakers of the three languages. [8]

Fleet

Orders

Bases and their locations

Partners

Rega work closely with several organizations and emergency services including the police, fire and ambulance services. It assists in rescue efforts related to road accidents with the Touring Club Suisse TCS. For alpine search, rescue and recovery operations, Rega works closely with rescue branch of the Swiss Alpine Club. For larger operations, Rega may request additional helicopters from the FOCA or the Swiss Accident Investigation Board (SAIB, German acronym SUST) (formerly Aircraft Accident Investigation Bureau (AAIB).

Rega is a partner of the Swiss Air Force, which supports Rega with helicopters and personnel when necessary. For search-and-rescue flights in difficult conditions, the Air Force has a FLIR-equipped helicopter (usually Eurocopter AS332 Super Puma or Cougar) on call. The Air Force continually monitors the airspace and directs emergency signals immediately to Rega. Aircraft equipment of the Swiss Air Force is used to gain a rapid and precise location of an emergency signal that is transmitted to the Rega helicopter early in an emergency mission. Rega also has access to the Air Force radio system for comprehensive radio coverage, which has a larger coverage area than civil aviation radio.

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Mountain rescue Search and rescue activities

Mountain rescue refers to search and rescue activities that occur in a mountainous environment, although the term is sometimes also used to apply to search and rescue in other wilderness environments. This tends to include mountains with technical rope access issues, snow, avalanches, ice, crevasses, glaciers, alpine environments and high altitudes. The difficult and remote nature of the terrain in which mountain rescue often occurs has resulted in the development of a number of specific pieces of equipment and techniques. Helicopters are often used to quickly extract casualties, and search dogs may be deployed to find a casualty.

Zurich Airport International airport serving Zurich, Switzerland

Zurich Airport is the largest international airport of Switzerland and the principal hub of Swiss International Air Lines. It serves Zürich, Switzerland's largest city, and, with its surface transport links, much of the rest of the country. The airport is located 13 kilometres (8 mi) north of central Zürich, in the municipalities of Kloten, Rümlang, Oberglatt, Winkel, and Opfikon, all of which are within the canton of Zürich.

Bern Airport

The Regional Aerodrome Bern-Belp, , is a regional aerodrome serving Bern, the de facto capital of Switzerland. The aerodrome is located within the town limits of Belp, and used to feature scheduled flights to some European metropolitan and several leisure destinations. It handled 183,319 passengers in 2016, a decrease of 3.5 percent over 2015.

Swiss Air Force Air component of the Swiss Armed Forces

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Eurocopter EC135 Utility helicopter

The Eurocopter EC135 is a twin-engine civil light utility helicopter produced by Airbus Helicopters. It is capable of flight under instrument flight rules (IFR) and is outfitted with a digital automatic flight control system (AFCS). First flying on 15 February 1994, it entered service in 1996 and 1,400 have been delivered up to September 2020 to 300 operators in 60 countries, accumulating over 5 million flight hours. It is mainly used for helicopter emergency medical services, corporate transport, law enforcement, offshore wind support, and military flight training. Half of them are in Europe and a quarter in North America. The H135M, certified under the name Eurocopter EC635, is a military variant.

Eurocopter EC145 Twin-engine light utility helicopter

The Airbus Helicopters H145 is a twin-engine light utility helicopter developed and manufactured by Airbus Helicopters. Originally referred to as the BK 117 C2, the H145 is based upon the MBB/Kawasaki BK 117 C1, which became a part of the combined Eurocopter line-up in 1992 with the merger of Messerschmitt-Bölkow-Blohm's helicopter division of Daimler-Benz and the helicopter division of Aérospatiale-Matra to form Eurocopter. The helicopter was earlier named EC145; an updated version, EC145 T2, was renamed H145 in 2015.

Stiftelsen Norsk Luftambulanse is a Norwegian humanitarian organisation, organised as a non-profit foundation. It primarily promotes and operates helicopter air ambulance services. As of 2014, they operate seven Eurocopter EC135 and one EC145 helicopters out of seven bases in Norway, based on contracts with the state through the Norwegian Air Ambulance. In Denmark, they operate three EC135 out of three bases.

Norwegian Air Ambulance

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Heliswiss

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The Swiss Red Cross, or SRC, is the national Red Cross society for Switzerland.

Locarno Airport

Locarno Airport, , mil ICAO code LSMO, also known as Locarno-Magadino Airport, is an airport located near the city of Locarno, Ticino, Switzerland. It is a mixed civilian and military airport. The airfield is used simultaneously by civilian aircraft and the Swiss Air Force from the "airfield command Locarno". Although they use the same runways, the Swiss Air Force has its own taxiways and parking and a large hangar. It is located in the community of Gordola, seven kilometers east of the Locarno city center. The nearest stop to the Swiss Federal Railways is the 2 km distant station Riazzino of railway Giubiasco Locarno.

Dübendorf Air Base

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Lufttransport Staffel 4

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Lufttransportdienst des Bundes

The Lufttransportdienst des Bundes (LTDB) ,operates the aircraft and helicopters of the Swiss government. The LTDB is located at Bern Airport. Since 2005, the LTDB has been part of the Swiss Air Force. Prior to that, she was assigned to the Federal Office of Civil Aviation.

Militär-Helikopter-Rettungsdienst

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Zürich–Winterthur railway

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This article represents the structure of the Swiss Armed Forces as of 1 January 2018:

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References

  1. "JO 7340.2H - Contractions" (PDF). FAA. Retrieved 23 May 2020.CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  2. "JO 7340.2H - Contractions" (PDF). FAA. Retrieved 23 May 2020.CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  3. Rega Missions
  4. Landespolizei Liechtenstein > Notrufnummern
  5. Air-Rescue, Rega-Swiss. "The beginnings of air-rescue". www.rega.ch. Retrieved 2020-08-27.
  6. "anfahrtsplan_rega_center_en.pdf" (Archive) Rega. Retrieved on March 16, 2014. "Address for route guidance systems: Bimenzältenstrasse 87 / 8302 Kloten" - See in: German, French, Italian
  7. "Rega Centre." (Archive) Rega. Retrieved on March 16, 2014.
  8. "Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) Rega in general".
  9. 1 2 Rega Fleet
  10. 1414 Das Magazin der Rega, Nr 87, 11.2016 Page 7 and 17
  11. Tages-Anzeiger: Rega kauft Jets für 130 Millionen Franken, abgerufen am 17. Juni 2015
  12. Meilenstein: Rega beschafft drei allwettertaugliche Rettungshelikopter vom Typ AW169-FIPS Rega-Medienmitteilung vom 1. Dezember 2015
  13. Flugrevue 02/2017 Seite 8