Air Evac Lifeteam Visits Emergency Response Class at SWOSU
The Elk City-based Air Evac Lifeteam recently appeared at the SWOSU Parks and Recreation Management Department’s emergency response course held on the Weatherford campus.
The team—including flight nurse Tricia Gonzales, pilot Brent Frazey, paramedic Curtis Rhoads and membership coordinator Christie Bell—met the class by landing their Air Evac Bell 206 Long Ranger helicopter on the SWOSU football practice field.
Course instructor Josh Williams said the Air Evac team made several presentations to the SWOSU students on topics including helicopter landing zone requirements and safety, ground safety helicopter operations, industry requirements, and employment opportunities.
Air Evac Lifeteam, operated by Air Evac EMS, Inc., is the largest independently owned and operated membership-supported air medical service in the United States, conducting its operations through more than 80 mutually-supporting air medical bases across 14 states. The company has established itself as the preeminent provider of air ambulance services to rural markets, serving over 1,300 diverse referral sources, including over 600 hospitals and 700 EMS agencies, and attracting more than 650,000 members in support of its presence in their local communities.
The company operates the world's largest fleet of more than 100 medically-equipped Bell 206 Long Ranger helicopters and has flown more than 135,000 people who were in critical need of care since its founding. The current service area includes operations in Alabama, Arkansas, Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kentucky, Mississippi, Missouri, Oklahoma, Tennessee and Texas, with the company being the largest air ambulance provider in 8 of its 14 states. The Elk City base was established in March 2005. During its 2-year history, the base has flown approximately 2,000 accident-free hours serving the communities of western Oklahoma.
Each year the SWOSU PRM Department’s emergency response course hosts speakers from a variety of emergency management related fields. In addition to Air Evac, other agencies involved in this year’s class include the Weatherford Fire Department, the Weatherford Police Department, the Bureau of Indian Affairs Weatherford Wildland Fire Unit, the Cheyenne and Arapaho Tribal Emergency Medical Service, and the Oklahoma Highway Patrol.
The emergency management course is a requirement in both the Park Law Enforcement and Wildland Fire Management academic programs. Individuals that are interested in the PRM Department programming can contact Dr. Chad Kinder, associate dean and department chair, at 580.774.3291 or firstname.lastname@example.org.