New helicopter boost for East Anglian Air Ambulance

A new emergency helicopter that will be used to help save lives has been welcomed into the East Anglian Air Ambulance (EAAA) fleet.

The Eurocopter EC135 will be used by the EAAA across Norfolk, Suffolk, Cambridgeshire and Bedfordshire to get their clinical teams to medical emergencies when their expertise and specialist equipment is required.

Tim Page, chief executive of EAAA, said: 'We are very excited that we have received the EC135, which will greatly enhance our current capability.

'The EC135 is larger and more capable than the aircraft which it will replace, and will enable us to carry more people and equipment – increasing our ability to save the lives of those who suffer accidents or medical emergencies.

'We will also be able to train more doctors to work on our air ambulances and, in the event that we have to transport a child to hospital, enable a parent to accompany them.'

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The charity currently operates with two Bolkow 105 helicopters, provided by Bond Air Services whilst it tenders for a new long-term supplier.

Mr Page continued: 'We are very grateful to Bonds for providing the EC135, which will replace one of the red helicopters which have been in the skies for the last few months.

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'The aircraft will alternate between our two bases, which means that many people across East Anglia and beyond will now once again see a yellow helicopter in the sky.'

The Eurocopter135 helicopter will become operational tomorrow and will divide its time between the Norwich and Cambridge airport bases to ensure the best coverage of the region at all times.

The EAAA is funded by public donations and has to raise �4.2m a year to survive, working closely with the East of England Ambulance Service NHS Trust and the region's hospitals.

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