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Big Sunday for RACQ CareFlight Rescue with 13 missions in 15 hours

Queensland’s RACQ CareFlight Rescue service has flown 13 missions in 15 hours across Southern Queensland.

The lifesaving service’s four helicopters began work at first light yesterday morning and received the final task of the day just before 9pm last night.

“It was a big day for our crews but we’re on standby 24 hours a day and go where we’re needed,” CareFlight CEO Ashley van de Velde said.

The first mission of the day was an inter-facility transfer from Gympie Hospital to Brisbane, by the Sunshine Coast based rescue helicopter.

All four bases would have their helicopters airborne in the next six hours as the crews were tasked on six missions.

The Toowoomba crew was to airlift a woman from a Kilkivan property with a serious medical condition before backing up immediately afterwards to attend a two vehicle collision near Gatton.

A male patient was treated on the scene by the CareFlight medical team and QAS before being airlifted back up the mountain with suspected internal injuries.

The Gold Coast helicopter was also in the air, at Beaudesert Hospital to airlift a woman with a severe allergic reaction, back to Griffith University Hospital.

At the same time Bundaberg was on a mission to Monto Hospital airlifting two patients who required further care at Bundaberg Hospital.

Just before noon the Sunshine Coast crew was to also treat and transfer a dirt bike rider who suffered head injuries after coming off his bike at Burgowan.

The rider was flown to the Royal Brisbane Hospital in a serious but stable condition.

“Having four bases and specialist aero-medical teams located across Southern Queensland enables us to deliver swift medical assistance to a wide region quickly,” Mr van de Velde said.

“CareFlight is able to airlift seriously ill patients to specialist care and respond to serious, immediate accidents and emergencies.

“Our crews are all local people and part of the job’s personal reward is to help patients from your own community.”

By the end of the day the crews had flown 13 missions in 15 hours.

Over a year the crews average three to four missions a day.

“Any emergency field missions we attended this weekend also included the Queensland Ambulance Service and Queensland Fire Service,” Mr van de Velde said.

“We work incredibly closely with these specialist emergency teams.

“It sees the best possible outcomes for patients in their greatest time of need.”

Toowoomba        5 missions

Bundaberg          4 missions

Sunshine Coast   3 missions

Gold Coast          1 mission