With our AW169 and MD902 helicopters, our critical care team can quickly access remote parts of Essex and Hertfordshire, including areas inaccessible to land vehicles.
Our helicopters have the ability to access remote parts of Essex and Hertfordshire quickly.
They are not affected by the ever-increasing traffic congestion on our roads and country lanes, and they can reach areas inaccessible to land vehicles, including woods, beaches, docks and golf courses. The AW169 flies at around 170 mph, and the MD902 at around 150mph, allowing our critical care team to reach the farthest point in Essex in less than 20 minutes and the farthest point in Hertfordshire in less than 15 minutes.
Max speed: 170mph
Length: 14.65 m
Roto Diameter: 12.12 m
Our AgustaWestland 169 flies out of our North Weald Airbase, and it is our first purchased helicopter (all of our previous aircraft were leased), with the majority of the £6.5 million provided by public donations. Manufactured by Leonardo, the AW169 delivers unrivalled operating capability in the most challenging conditions, with the largest cabin in its class, giving our critical care team entire access to the patient when flying, while a large baggage compartment is available to store additional stretchers and equipment.
The high clearance of the main and tail rotors provides enhanced safety on the ground, while the auxiliary power unit (APU) mode ensures the continued operation of the environmental control system, radios and medical devices when the rotors are stopped. Just under 5 tonnes in weight, with 5 blades, two jet turbine engines, and a retractable undercarriage, the AW169 supports the charity’s strategic objectives in providing advanced, life-saving care to the communities of Essex and Hertfordshire.
The MD902 Explorer
Max speed: 150mph
Height: 3.66 m
Length: 11.84 m
Roto Diameter: 10.31 m
Our MD902 Explorer is housed at our Earls Colne Airbase and leased from Specialist Aviation Services (SAS). This twin twin-turbine light helicopter flies at around 150mph, which is essential for our time-critical operations, and it has the ability to access areas inaccessible to land vehicles.
The MD902 is a versatile aircraft providing ease of access to the rear cabin, enabling our pre-hospital care doctors and critical care paramedics to bring the hospital to the patient. Produced by MD Helicopters, the MD902 Explorer features the NOTAR® (“no tail rotor”) anti-torque system, which significantly improves safety in confined spaces and produces very quiet operation and a smooth ride.
To purchase an AW169 today would cost somewhere between 7 and 8 million pounds.
The average cost for fuel per hour is £145, and the average cost per mission is £2,200. It costs in excess of £750,000 every month to remain operational and to cover all charitable costs.
Our typical flight height is around 1,000 feet, but the helicopters may fly as low as 500 feet over urban areas on a mission. The team can land in built-up areas as well as remote countryside locations.