LifeFlight's record breaking long weekend of rescues
RACQ LifeFlight rescue helicopter crews have recorded the busiest long weekend in the charity service's 36-year history after flying a total of 28 missions all over Queensland over the Labour Day long weekend.
The rescue service more than doubled its previous record for last year's Labour Day long weekend of 13 missions, with the total of 28 missions over the three days exceeding the record for any previous weekends.
From Friday night to Monday evening, RACQ LifeFlight rescue crews at five community bases (Brisbane, Toowoomba, Sunshine Coast, Bundaberg, Mount Isa) along with the SGAS Surat Basin Aeromedical Service at Roma flew nine missions to primary accidents and incidents and performed 19 transfers of patients between hospitals around Queensland.
At one stage on the weekend, all helicopters were out at the same time performing lifesaving missions.
These included rescuing a jet ski rider after an accident off North Stradbroke Island; airlifting an injured horse rider from a remote station north east of Mount Isa; transporting a Brisbane holidaymaker from Fraser Island after a fall; rescuing a 24-year-old motocross rider after an accident on the Sunshine Coast; and transferring a four-month-old baby who suffered burns after it was believed he fell into an open fire near Gympie.
The SGAS helicopter crew also pushed the limits in flying a massive 470 km round trip from Roma to Augathella to airlift a 15-year-old male who had suffered traumatic head injuries following a single vehicle rollover accident.
LifeFlight Chief Operations Officer Brian Guthrie said long weekends and public holidays were traditionally the busiest time of the year for RACQ LifeFlight Rescue crews.
"We know that Queenslanders love to get out and about and enjoy the great outdoors and fantastic weather, especially this time of the year,” Mr Guthrie said.
"Unfortunately accidents and mishaps are going to happen and people will become ill and will need a lifesaving service in their greatest hour of need.
"LifeFlight is proud to provide a world class air medical service at no cost to patients and our air and medical crews and support staff did an amazing job over the long weekend in attending 28 missions all around the state.
"That's 28 people who have a second chance at life thanks to LifeFlight and we wish them all a full and speedy recovery.”