Hoist Rescue

rescue 1

The addition of hoist capability to our rescue compliment allows us to directly deploy or recover a rescuer to/from a location. As the helicopter approaches the scene, a rescuer is deployed via cable hoist directly to the location of the victim, whether on top of a car in a flood, or to their side when located in a forested environment. Once the victim is placed in the appropriate device they can be extricated using the hoist into the aircraft or suitable landing zone.


Short Haul

rescue 2

STAR Flight crews may use a helicopter rescue technique called a “short haul.” This simple concept utilizes the helicopter to lift and move rescuers and victims from one location to another using a fixed rope that is attached to the cargo hook on the bottom of the helicopter.

A short haul technique may be utilized in two general rescue operations: moving the rescuer in to a patient’s location (for instance, a rescuer may be short-hauled in to a victim who is stranded on a roof of a vehicle during a flood event); or to extract the victim and rescuer together to a place of safety (this same victim is removed from the roof of the car and moved to safety, or a victim may be placed in a rescue bag and short-hauled with a rescuer from a rock cliff to safety.

Using hand signals or direct radio communications, the rescuer attached to the end of the 80 foot rope signals to the crew chief above in the aircraft to raise, lower or maintain the hover that the pilot has established. Once the rescuer has secured the victim to the end of the rope or the rescuer and victim have been moved to a safe location, the helicopter will gently lower the rescuer and victim to the ground.

When responding to a reported rescue condition, STAR Flight crews pre-rig the helicopter so that once over the scene they can quickly and effectively deploy a rescuer to the victim and then extract both to a safe location utilizing whichever method is most appropriate for the situation.

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Charles Brotherton
County Executive

Chuck Spangler
Program Director

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