Operator Profile

Key Facts

Current Title:
English Title:
First Established:
ICAO Code:


Narrative Summary

The Gold Coast Helicopter Rescue Service was formed in 1981. Its mission was to save lives by providing a search and rescue service to local beaches and the hinterland. In 1992 the service was renamed CareFlight Queensland and expanded to carry out search and rescue in southern Queensland and northern New South Wales. RACQ joined as a naming rights sponsor in 1991 and remains as a sponsor to this day. A fixed-wing Air Ambulance service was launched in 2004, to provide long range patient transport. In 2013, CareFlight Queensland merged with the Sunshine Coast Helicopter Rescue Service (SCHRS), Australia’s oldest helicopter rescue service.

Key Dates

1981 Gold Coast Helicopter Rescue Service first established.
1992 Service renamed CareFlight Queensland.
2004 Fixed-wing Air Ambulance unit created.
2013 Merger with Sunshine Coast rescue service.

Current Status

The CareFlight Group is fully operational.

Future Plans

No plans known.


Special Markings

CareFlight helicopters operate in an overall white/yellow/blue colour scheme based on the company logo, with ‘CareFlight’ titles on the forward or rear fuselage. The fixed wing aircraft operate in a simpler white and blue colour scheme with a thin yellow diagonal line across the fuselage and ‘CareFlight’ titles on the forward fuselage.

Aircraft Serial Numbers

CareFlight aircraft and helicopters carry Australian civil aircraft registrations, e.g. A109 VH-IAG.

Unit/Base Codes

Coding system not used.


Aircraft Designations

None – Manufacturers designations used

Current Aircraft Inventory

Aircraft Type Total Del’d Total Active Still on Order Role
AgustaWestland AW139 ? ? ? EMS
Beech Super King Air 200 5 4 0 Air Ambulance
Bell 230 1 1 0 EMS
Bell 412 6 3 0 EMS
Bombardier Learjet 45 1 1 0 Air Ambulance
Bombardier Learjet 45XR 1 1 0 Air Ambulance
Canadair Challenger 604 1 1 0 Air Ambulance
MBB BK117B-2 3 3 0 EMS

All-Time Aircraft Used List

Aircraft Type Quantity Service Entry Out of Service Origin
Aerospatiale AS350B Squirrel 2 1986 ? France/SCHRS
Aerospatiale AS365C Dauphin 2 1 1988 ? France
Agusta A109E Power 1 2004 ? Italy
Agusta AW119 Koala 1 2001 ? Italy
AgustaWestland AW139 ? 2014 current Italy
Beech Super King Air 200 5 2011 current USA
Bell 206L1 LongRanger 1 2013 ? SCHRS
Bell 230 1 ? current SCHRS
Bell 412 6 1994 current USA
Bombardier Learjet 45 1 ? current USA
Bombardier Learjet 45XR 1 ? current USA
Canadair Challenger 604 1 ? current Canada
Gates Learjet 36A 2 2007 ? USA
IAI 1124 Westwind 1 ? 2009 contractor
MBB BK117B-2 2 2013 current SCHRS

Aircraft NOT Used

No false reports known.

Aircraft Losses and Incidents

A IAI Westwind was forced to ditch in 2009, (wikipedia entry).


Main Headquarters

CareFlight Headquarters, 4-6 Barden St, Northmead, NSW 2152, Australia.

Organisational Structure

The CareFlight Group includes the fixed-wing CareFlight International Air Ambulance (CFIAA) unit and the rotary-wing RACQ CareFlight Rescue unit. CareFlight also has a government contract in Northern Territory, and two commercial contracts with a consortium of oil and gas exploration and production companies operating in Australia.

Current Unit Assignments

Table of current unit assignments

Historical Unit Assignments

To be added.

All-Time Flying Units List

CareFlight International Air Ambulance
Careflight Northern Territory
RACQ CareFlight Rescue

Air Bases

Current Air Bases

The fixed-wing aircraft operate from Sydney, Darwin, Perth and Cairns. The helicopters are based at Toowoomba, Bundaberg and the Gold and Sunshine Coasts, and also Darwin.

All-Time Air Bases Used List

As above.

More Information


None known.




wikipedia: CareFlight
Facebook: CareFlight
Facebook: RACQCareFlight
RACQ CareFlight secures funding
CareFlight Bell 230

Any photographs illustrating this operator would be welcome.


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