Archive for December 12th, 2012

Rockford Medical flight crashes near Rochelle – update

The Chicago Tribune has a lengthy follow-up article on the dangers/hazards of medical helicopter flights following Monday’s fatal crash:

About 400,000 patients are transported in the U.S. each year by emergency medical helicopters, a vital and expanding service that has seen more than 100 fatalities since 2003, including three deaths Monday in Illinois.

That accident record is unacceptable, the National Transportation Safety Board says.

The job of helicopter emergency medical crew member ranks as the highest-risk occupation based on death rates — more dangerous than deep-sea fisherman, logger and nine other hazardous jobs — according to a study a few years ago by Dr. Ira Blumen of the University of Chicago Hospitals.

The safety board has urged the Federal Aviation Administration in recent years to mandate safety improvements for the air ambulance industry in place of voluntary compliance, an FAA strategy that critics say has not been effective enough. Broad inconsistencies still exist in pilot training, the degree of safety-related communications and navigation equipment aboard helicopter medical fleets and flight standards employed by independent operators that are hired mostly by hospitals, investigations into numerous accidents have shown.

Read the entire article HERE.

thanks Chris

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Des Plaines house fire 12-8-12

This from the Des Plaines Patch:

A fire that erupted in a garage attached to a house early Saturday morning displaced the two Des Plaines residents who live there. The two occupants and their family cat, which was rescued by firefighters from the basement of the house, received housing assistance from the city’s emergency management agency, according to a report from the Des Plaines Fire Department, because the house was uninhabitable following the fire.

The Des Plaines Fire Department responded to the fire report at 256 Kathleen Drive at 2:02 a.m. on Dec. 8, according to the report, arrived on the scene at 2:07 a.m. and the fire was extinguished within 20 minutes of their arrival on the scene.

The residents heard a noise in the garage, the fire department stated, and when one of the residents opened the door from the living space to the garage, suffered a slight burn to one hand and found the fire. They exited the house and called 9-1-1, according to the report.

The resident who was burned was evaluated by paramedics, the fire department stated, and released on the scene with no treatment needed.

Firefighters rescued the family cat from the basement, according to the report, and gave it oxygen using a mask designed for pets.

The article and photos can be found HERE.

thanks Steve

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