- Bunbury-based service to double the State's emergency response capability
- Made possible by $29.95m from Government's Royalties for Regions program
Western Australia's ability to provide critical medical care, 24 hours a day, every day of the year, has doubled with the State's second RAC Rescue helicopter operational from February 1.
Premier Colin Barnett said the second chopper, based at Bunbury Airport, would help save lives, particularly in regional areas.
"The new helicopter will work alongside the Perth-based chopper, which means the expanded service can reach 95 per cent of the State's population," Mr Barnett said.
Emergency Services Minister Joe Francis said getting emergency medical care as quickly as possible to badly injured people including road crash victims was the key to saving lives.
"Since 2003, the Perth-based RAC Rescue has flown more than 4,400 missions, bringing many people from regional areas to city hospitals for lifesaving treatment," Mr Francis said.
In 2015, the helicopter responded to 383 calls for help including road crashes, farming accidents and searches.
Acting Regional Development Minister Mia Davies said the new helicopter was funded with $29.95 million over four years from the State Government's Royalties for Regions program.
"A second emergency rescue helicopter will without doubt save lives and improve the safety of people living and travelling in regional WA," Ms Davies said.
Both rescue helicopters are managed by the Department of Fire and Emergency Services.
- The Bunbury-based helicopter is equipped to fly in all weather conditions and conduct searches for, and recover, people in distress on land and in coastal waters
- Its crew includes a critical care paramedic, rescue crewman and experienced pilot
Premier's office - 6552 5000
Emergency Services Minister's office - 6552 6500
Regional Development Minister's office - 6552 6700