SAMU de France

Operator Profile


Narrative Summary

SAMU de France is a national organisation that despatches and regulates emergency medical care throughout France. In France ‘Services Mobiles d’Urgence et de Réanimations’, or Emergency Mobile Resuscitation Services are known as SMUR. The first such teams were established in 1955, to provide pre-hospital care at road accidents. In the following years many other hospitals introduced similar emergency medical services, and these were formally recognised by the government in 1965. In 1968 the Service d’aide médicale urgente (SAMU) or Emergency Medical Assistance Service was created to dispatch and coordinate these hospital teams. A SAMU call centre was established in each Department, 100 in total, and they control about 350 SMUR distributed throughout the country. In the 1970s military and Protection Civile helicopters began to be used for the most urgent accident cases. In 1983 the first civil helicopter service was established. At the present time there are 40 SAMU helicopter services, three of which are seasonal. Each service is provided by a commercial contractor and may cover a number of departments.

Key Dates

1955    First mobile hospital teams for attending accidents (SMUR teams) formed.
2 December 1965    Government decree formally authorises SMUR teams attached to hospitals.
1968    SAMU established to dispatch and coordinate SMUR teams.
1983    First full-time civil helicopter SAMU service launched.
6 January 1986    New law passed to regulate Emergency Medical Services.

Current Status

The SAMU aircraft and helicopters are used for Emergency Medical Services (EMS) missions and Air Ambulance duties.

Future Plans

No plans known.


Special Markings

Since SAMU helicopters are operated by contracted commercial companies, they are seen in a variety of colour schemes. Most common are variants of overall white with blue markings or overall yellow with blue markings. The markings include SAMU service titles and the three-barred cross which is the official logo of SAMU. Most helicopters also carry the SAMU district number and the logo of the commercial operator. Fixed wing (King Air) aircraft appear to retain their operators colour scheme with the three-barred cross in white on a black disk behind the cockpit amd SAMU 2B titles on the fin fairing.

Aircraft Serial Numbers

SAMU aircraft and helicopters carry French civil registrations, e.g. EC135 F-GMTF, except for the MD902s which operate under Belgian civil registrations.

Unit/Base Codes

Coding system not used


Aircraft Designations

None – Manufacturers designations used

Current Aircraft Inventory

Table of Current Service Aircraft

All-Time Aircraft Used List

All-Time Table of Aircraft Used

Aircraft NOT Used

Cessna 150 F-SMUR and SOCATA TB20 F-SAMU are entirely fictional.


Main Headquarters

Samu-Urgences de France, 103 avenue de Magenta, F-75010 PARIS.

Organisational Structure

All helicopters and aircraft are operated by local SAMU units attached to major hospitals or health centres.

Current Unit Assignments

Table of Current Unit Assignments

Historical Unit Assignments

To be added.

All-Time Flying Units List

List of Flying Units

Air Bases

Current Air Bases

See table of unit assignments.

All-Time Air Bases Used List

As above.

More Information


French Aviation Bibliography – to be added


No feature articles known.


Official Website
Service d’aide médicale urgente
Map of SAMU helicopter bases
SAMU helicopters in France
The Bases of SAMU Helicopters in France

Any further photographs illustrating this air arm would be welcome.

All-Time Units Listing

of the SAMU de France

This page lists all the flying units of the SAMU de France, since its formation.

Aisne SAMU 02
Haute Corse SAMU 2B
Haute-Alpes SAMU 05
Alpes Maritime SAMU 06
Aube SAMU 11
Aude SAMU 12
Bouche-du-Rhone SAMU 13
Cantal SAMU 15
Cote D’Or SAMU 21
Cote D’Armor SAMU 22
Dordogne SAMU 24
Drome SAMU 26
Eure & Loire SAMU 28
Finistere SAMU 29
Gard SAMU 30
Haute Garonne SAMU 31
Gironde SAMU 33
Herault SAMU 34
Indre SAMU 36
Indre & Loire SAMU 37
Isere SAMU 38
Loir & Cher SAMU 41
Loire SAMU 42
Loire Atlantique SAMU 44
Loiret SAMU 45
Marne SAMU 51
Meurthe & Moselle SAMU 54
Nord SAMU 59
Orne SAMU 61
Pais-de-Calais SAMU 62
Pyrenee Atlantique SAMU 64
Pyrenees Orientales SAMU 66
Haut Rhine SAMU 68
Rhone SAMU 69
Somme SAMU 80
Var SAMU 83
Vienne SAMU 86
Haute Vienne SAMU 87
Yonne SAMU 89
Val de Marne SAMU 94
Guyanne SAMU 973
– SAMU Lorraine

All-Time Aircraft Used List
SAMU de France

of the SAMU de France
Aircraft Type Quantity Service Entry Retirement Origin
Aerospatiale AS 355F Ecureuil 2 ? ? ? contractor
Aerospatiale AS 355N Ecureuil 2 3 ? current contractor
Aerospatiale AS 365C Dauphin 2 ? ? ? contractor
Aerospatiale AS 365N Dauphin 2 1 ? current contractor
AgustaWestland AW109E Power 10 ? current contractor
Beech King Air C90 ? ? ? contractor
Beech Super King Air 250 2 2013 current contractor
Bell 206L LongRanger ? ? ? contractor
Eurocopter EC135 24 1997 current contractor
MDH MD902 Explorer 4 ? current contractor
Sud Aviation SA 316B Alouette III ? ? ? contractor

Current Unit Assignments

of the SAMU de France
Unit Type Base
Aisne 1 x MD902 (SAMU 02) Laon
Haute Corse 2 x Super King Air 250 (SAMU 2B) Ajaccio/Bastia
Haute-Alpes 1 x EC135 (SAMU 05) Gap
Alpes Maritime 1 x AW109P (SAMU 06) Nice
Aube 1 x EC135 (SAMU 11) Carcassonne
Aude 1 x EC135 (SAMU 12) Rodez
Bouche-du-Rhone 1 x EC135 (SAMU 13) Marseilles
Cantal 1 x EC135 (SAMU 15) Aurillac
Cote D’Or 1 x EC135 (SAMU 21) Dijon
Cote D’Armor 1 x AS355N (SAMU 22) Saint Brieuc
Dordogne 1 x AS355N (SAMU 24) Perigueux
Drome 1 x AW109P (SAMU 26) Valence
Eure & Loire 2 x AW109E (SAMU 28) Dreux
Finistere 1 x AS355N (SAMU 29) Brest
Gard 1 x EC135 (SAMU 30) Nimes
Haute Garonne 2 x EC135 (SAMU 31) Toulouse
Gironde 1 x AW109P (SAMU 33) Bordeaux-Merignac
Herault 1 x EC135 (SAMU 34) Montpelier
Indre 1 x AW109P (SAMU 36) Chateauroux
Indre & Loire 1 x EC135 (SAMU 37) Tours
Isere 1 x EC135 (SAMU 38) Grenoble
Loir & Cher 1 x EC135 (SAMU 41) Blois
Loire 1 x EC135 (SAMU 42) Saint-Etienne
Loire Atlantique 1 x AW109P (SAMU 44) Nantes
Loiret 1 x EC135 (SAMU 45) Orleans
Marne 1 x EC135 (SAMU 51) Reims
Meurthe & Moselle 1 x EC135 (SAMU 54) Nancy
Nord 1 x MD902 (SAMU 59) Lille
Orne 1 x EC135 (SAMU 61) Alencon
Pais-de-Calais 1 x MD902 (SAMU 62) Arras
Pyrenee Atlantique 1 x AW109E (SAMU 64) Bayonne
Pyrenees Orientales 1 x EC135 (SAMU 66) Perpignan
Haut Rhine 1 x AW109E (SAMU 68) Mulhouse
Rhone 1 x EC135 (SAMU 69) Lyon-Bron
Somme 1 x MD902 (SAMU 80) Amiens
Var 1 x EC135 (SAMU 83) Toulon
Vienne 1 x EC135 (SAMU 86) Poitiers
Haute Vienne 1 x EC135 (SAMU 87) Limoges
Yonne 1 x AW109P (SAMU 89) Auxerre
Val de Marne 1 x EC135 (SAMU 94) Creteil
Guyanne 1 x AS 365N (SAMU 973) Cayenne
1 x EC135 (SAMU Lorraine) Nancy