On average, the Yorkshire Air Ambulance can attend up to five incidents a day in an array of locations up and down the county from rural North Yorkshire to the urban landscapes of Leeds and Sheffield.
It can be a very exciting experience seeing a helicopter hovering above, especially for children or those who haven’t seen one close up before. When landing a helicopter there are a lot of considerations to take, especially when the general public could be at risk. If you see a helicopter trying to land near you, you can follow these five simple steps below to stay safe.
Keep far back
Whilst it may be tempting to rush over to the aircraft, the best thing you can do is keep as far back as possible until the helicopter has landed. If you’re in a field, head over the outer perimeter and if you’re in an urban environment, stand as far back as you possibly can. The downdraft created by our blades is very powerful and could knock you off your feet.
Hold on to your belongings
Our helicopters can travel up to speeds of 160mph, which can generate quite a hefty downdraft when hovering above and coming into land. Make sure you keep hold of your belongings and keep your children or pets safe and close by. Don’t approach the helicopters until the blades have stopped turning and the engine has been switched off.
Allow the crew enough space and time to get to the emergency
Unless our visit is scheduled, our primary concern will be the welfare of our patients. Our Pilots stay with the aircraft to ensure its safety and will be more than happy to answer any questions you may have, but please give our crew plenty of time to vacate the aircraft and grab their medical equipment.
Be mindful of the photographs that you take
We love to see photographs of our helicopters and crew on the job – it’s a great way of helping us spread the word about our service. However, please be mindful of the photographers that you do take and ensure there are no patients in the background and that you’re not obstructing our crew from doing their jobs.